Byron Scott said a couple of days ago that when the Cavaliers come out on the other side of this, they'll be better for it. Not necessarily the losing streak, but the mammoth rebuilding project that is underway.
He meant that the players would value wins a little more than they have for the last five years, when victories became something of a birthright or an expected occurence when the Cavs were on the floor. After nothing but losing for nearly two months, suddenly one simple victory felt so sweet to the players. That much was evident in the locker room, where smiles and deep exhales were all around.
Lost in the jubilation of the victory was the fact it was the Cavs' ninth win of the season. That equals the Philadelphia 76ers' record for fewest wins in NBA history, meaning the Cavs need just one more victory in their last 28 games to avoid the worst record of all time. Unless they manage to lose 28 in a row -- and given what we've just endured, anything is possible -- the Cavs will avoid at least one record for futility.
If the Cavs can find a way to play every night as they did Friday, more victories will be in the offing. Of course, playing the franchise known for losing and its embarrassing ways certainly makes the Cavs look better. And there were still plenty of problems, such as defending the paint (58 points in the paint for the Clippers).
But all those problems can wait until another day. For now, Scott will finally get a good night's sleep and the Cavs can worry about something positive for a change -- a winning streak. The Washington Wizards, who haven't won on the road all season, enter the Q on Sunday.
If the Cavs win, they will have their SECOND winning streak of the season. Their only other "hot" streak was Nov. 5-9, when the Cavs won three in a row.
One of those victories was against the Wizards.
Antawn Jamison 35 points, nine rebounds
J.J. Hickson 27 points, 14 rebounds
Mo Williams 17 points, 14 assists
Daniel Gibson 17 points, 10 in OT
Blake Griffin 32 points, 13 rebounds
Baron Davis 26 points
Randy Foye 23 points
Antawn Jamison hit a 3-pointer with 22 seconds left in overtime to give the Cavs a 123-119 advantage.
Antawn Jamison surpassed 18,000 points for his career, becoming the ninth active player to do so.
They said it
"I can smile again." -- Daniel Gibson
The Cavs (9-45) host the Washington Wizards (14-37) at 6 p.m. on Sunday.