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Cleveland Cavaliers

Pregame: Jazz at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: March 5, 2012

Utah Jazz (17-19) at Cleveland Cavaliers (13-22)
Time: 7 p.m.; Venue: The Q; TV/Radio: WTAM, WAKR, WHBC
Cavs probables: PG Kyrie Irving (18.5 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 5.2 apg), SG Anthony Parker (5.9, 2.4, 2.3, SF Alonzo Gee (9.8, 4.1, 1.5), PF Antawn Jamison (17.7, 6.6, 1.9), C Ryan Hollins (3.6, 2.1, 0.2)
Jazz probables: PG Devin Harris (9.7 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 4.6 apg), SG Gordon Hayward (9.4, 2.8, 3.1), SF Josh Howard (8.5, 3.8, 1.2), PF Paul Millsap (15.7, 9.0, 2.0), C Al Jefferson (18.5, 9.3, 2.1)
Injuries: Cavs -- Anderson Varejao (wrist) out; Jazz -- Raja Bell (adductor) probable

* Byron Scott conceded today that the Cavs have lost a little bit of confidence during this five-game losing streak. The aren't playing with that same killer instinct and they're blowing leads lately, something that was a rarity during the first half of the season.

* Of course, Scott said it's nothing that a victory can't cure. That's what makes tonight's game against Utah so critical. After tonight, the Cavs are on the road this week against Denver and Oklahoma City. As the losses pile up, it wears on a team mentally. If the Cavs let this one get away tonight, things could start to get ugly.

* The Jazz are 3-13 on the road this season and have one road victory since Jan. 17. Scott said he sees a Jazz team that plays with a ton of confidence at home, but not on the road. That makes tonight's goal simple: Make the Jazz as uncomfortable as possible.

* Al Jefferson destroyed the Cavs in their first meeting in January when he scored a season-high 30 points. The Jazz are a post-heavy team with Jefferson and Paul Millsap. Foul trouble neutralized Millsap in the first game, but the Cavs' bigs have a ton of work to do defensively tonight.

* Saturday night marked the most Ryan Hollins has been on the court with Kyrie Irving since the Wine & Gold scrimmage, Hollins saijd this morning. The two seemed to have a little chemistry and was a bit reminiscent of Baron Davis' time with the Cavs last year, when Davis' presence elevated Hollins' game.

* Hollins said he's never played with someone as explosive as Irving and loves how the rookie can put the ball right at the rim on the lobs. It's a work in progress, but then again, so is the rest of this roster. Hollins makes plenty of mistakes, but he plays hard and is aggressive. Byron Scott loves that about him.

* The fact Anthony Parker has taken the 3-pointer at the buzzer in two of the last three games illustrates the limited scoring options the Cavs have right now. Parker is a great guy, but I'm not sure he's the one you want to have the ball with the game on the line.

* The Cavs have two guys who can conistently score: Antawn Jamison and Kyrie Irving. Scott believes Alonzo Gee can develop into a consistent option and Tristan Thompson is on that list as well, but it will take time that the Cavs simply don't have this season. So they'll finish out the schedule with what they have, then go to work in the offseason continuing the development of Gee and Thompson while searching for ways to add another scoring option this summer.

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