New York Knicks (29-26) at Cleveland Cavaliers (10-47)
Time: 7:30 p.m.; Venue: The Q; TV/Radio: FS Ohio/WAKR
Cavs probable starters: PG Ramon Sessions, SG Anthony Parker, SF Christian Eyenga, PF Antawn Jamison, C J.J. Hickson
Knicks probable starters: PG Chauncey Billups, SG Landry Fields, SF Carmelo Anthony, PF Amar'e Stoudemire, C Ronny Turiaf
Officials: Dick Bavetta, Derrick Collins, Brian Forte
Injury report: Cavs -- Anderson Varejao (ankle) out; Knicks -- Kelenna Azubuike (knee surgery) out.
* The Cavs will be without new acquisitions Baron Davis, Luke Harangody and Semih Erden tonight. None of them will be in Cleveland until tomorrow. All three should take their physicals tomorrow and be ready to play Sunday against the 76ers.
* Cavs coach Byron Scott spoke to Baron Davis Thursday night and Davis said he's excited to come to Cleveland. Both men are looking at this as a second chance after the first go-round in New Orleans ended so badly. Scott said the two shared a laugh over the way their relationship has been portrayed. Both men insist it is much, much better.
* Scott doesn't understand why Davis has the reputation of being so difficult in the locker room. He said Davis is highly intelligent and a genuinely good person. He said Don Nelson had similar things to say about Davis when the two were together at Golden State. "Nelly didn't have a bad thing to say about him," he said.
* Davis' left knee is still bothering him (the swelling prevented him from playing Wednesday), but the Cavs don't believe it will keep him from passing a physical. Davis told Scott he was between 80 and 85 percent when the Clippers played the Cavs at the Q a couple of weeks ago. He had 26 points and seven assists. Scott just shook his head in disbelief. "We've got to get him to 100 percent." When he's healthy, Scott believes Davis is among the best five point guards in the league.
* Scott was so pleased with the moves that brought Davis, Harangody and Erden to the Cavs that he hugged GM Chris Grant after Thursday's trade deadline passed. "He answered a whole lot of questions," Scott said of Grant. He always believed in Grant as a GM, but understood that fans were getting impatient and upset as the Cavs stood by and did nothing during such a miserable season.
* The Cavs didn't have to touch any of their trade exceptions to acquire Erden and Harangody. Since both players make the minimum, the Cavs used the Minimum Salary Exception, which allows teams to trade guys making the minimum without needing cap space or a trade exception.
* The Knicks look completely different now than they did in December when the Cavs beat them in overtime (their only win that month). The additions of Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups, plus the style of coach Mike D'Antoni, make them even more explosive. But Scott said the one good part about catching them so soon after the trades is the limited playbook the Knicks are working from. Scott said it's impossible they know the whole system already.
* The Cavs have won nine in a row against the Knicks. They haven't lost to them at home since Nov. 29, 2006.
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