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Cavs 109, Pacers 97; Jason Lloyd's 28 final thoughts following Kevin Love's big night

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 30, 2014
Varejao in suit talking to LeBron

CLEVELAND: Twenty-eight thoughts for a season-high 28 points from Kevin Love in a 109-97 victory against the Indiana Pacers…

1. A week ago at this time, the Cavs were ranked 28th in the league in defensive field-goal percentage and would’ve struggled guarding a corpse.

2. Since then they’ve risen five spots in the defensive rankings and are on the verge of leaping two more teams. In their last four games, opponents are shooting 40 percent from the floor. They’re active in passing lanes and deflecting away passes, they’re defending the pick-and-roll, they’re not allowing teams to beat them in transition or behind the 3-point line. Seemingly overnight they’re becoming a very, very good defensive team. They were terrific again Saturday against the Pacers.

3. A big reason is the turnarounds by two of the most defensively deficient players on the team: Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving. Cavs coach David Blatt praised Love tonight for playing the best defense of his career, and not to be cynical, but the bar wasn’t set very high. Love has never been a good defensive player, which he openly admitted Saturday.

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Kevin Love's 28-point outburst ignites Cavs in 109-97 victory against Pacers

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 29, 2014
Marion, Shawn defends Pacers' David West

CLEVELAND: Cavs forward Kevin Love scored a season-high 28 points and added 10 rebounds and Cleveland won its third straight with a 109-97 victory Saturday night against the Indiana Pacers.

Love took full advantage of center Anderson Varejao’s absence, who was out resting sore ribs. Love scored 16 points in the first quarter – equal to or more points than he scored in half of the team’s first 14 games – handled the ball more and seemed to be more involved in the Cavs’ pick-and-roll game.

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Cavs 113, Wizards 87: Jason Lloyd's 16 final thoughts

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 27, 2014
James, LeBron fouled by Gortat

CLEVELAND: Sixteen thoughts for 16 Washington free throws (two more than LeBron James made by himself) in a 113-87 beatdown of the Washington Wizards…

1. OK so apparently LeBron James was right and I was wrong. Not the first time or last time I’ll type that. I didn’t see much defensive progress about this time a week ago. My main concern surrounding this team since training camp has been defense and whether or not the Cavs could defend in the half court.

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LeBron James scores 29 points in 113-87 blowout of Wizards

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 26, 2014
James, LeBron fouled by Wiz

CLEVELAND – LeBron James had 29 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists and the Cavaliers beat the Washington Wizards 113-87 Wednesday night.

James made a season-high 14 free throws on a night the Cavs were never really threatened. Forward Kevin Love had 21 points and five rebounds, guard Kyrie Irving had 18 points and five assists and forward Anderson Varejao had 10 points and seven rebounds as the Cavs won their second straight after a four-game losing streak.

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Pregame: Wizards at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 26, 2014
Nene, Wall

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

TV: Fox Sports Ohio

Radio: WTAM 1100-AM, WAKR 1590-AM, WHBC 1480-AM, WMMS 100.7-FM,   La Mega 87.7-FM (Spanish)

Injury report: Cavs - Matthew Dellavedova (knee) out; Wizards - Nene (foot) questionable; Otto Porter (hamstring) questionable, Martell Webster (back) out.

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Cavs 106, Magic 74: Jason Lloyd's 16 final thoughts on end of 4-game losing streak

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 25, 2014
Amundson, Lou

CLEVELAND: Sixteen thoughts for 16 made free throws in a much-needed 106-74 beatdown of the Orlando Magic…

1. The Cavs have won their last two games by a total of 65 points. Not bad. Of course, they lost four in a row in between those two victories, but who’s counting?

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LeBron James has 29 points, 11 assists as Cavs end skid with 106-74 win over Magic

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 24, 2014
Love, Kevin defends vs Magic

CLEVELAND -- LeBron James had 29 points and 11 assists, including 16 points in the first quarter, and the Cavs ended a four-game losing streak with a 106-74 victory Monday night against the Orlando Magic.

The 74 points were the fewest the Magic have scored and the fewest the Cavs have allowed this season.

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With Cavs on 4-game losing streak, LeBron James' self-assessment: 'I stink'

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 24, 2014
James, Lebron arms outstretched

CLEVELAND: LeBron James was fairly blunt in his assessment Monday as he begins the week with his longest losing streak in nearly four years.

“We’ve got a four-game losing streak, so I stink,” James said. “I’m not doing my job. I’ve got to do a better job.”

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Pregame: Magic at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 24, 2014

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

TV: Fox Sports Ohio

Radio: WTAM 1100-AM, WAKR 1590-AM, WHBC 1480-AM, WMMS 100.7-FM,   La Mega 87.7-FM (Spanish)

Injury report: Cavs - Matthew Dellavedova (knee) out; Magic - Tobias Harris (calf) questionable; Aaron Gordon (foot) out; Devyn Marble (shoulder) out; Kyle O'Quinn (ankle) out.

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Raptors 110, Cavs 93; Jason Lloyd's 25 final thoughts following Cavs' fourth consecutive loss

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 23, 2014
James, LeBron sitting pensive

CLEVELAND: Twenty-five thoughts for 25 fourth-quarter Toronto points in a 110-93 loss to the Raptors…

1. LeBron James was having flashbacks on Saturday, back to Miami and various points during that initial 2010-11 season. That was his career low point and he spent Saturday warning teammates about it. That was also the last time he lost four consecutive games. Until now.

2. James called the Cavs “fragile” after this loss and warned that this isn’t even as bad as it will get. The worst it got for him was the 2011 Finals when the Heat blew a 15-point lead in Game 2 and lost, then lost three consecutive games after going up 2-1 to lose the series.

3. “We’re a very fragile team right now. Any little adversity hits us we shell up,” James said. “That comes with experience. That’s not even the lowest this is going to get for us. The lowest it can get is being up 17 in the fourth quarter in Game 2 of the Finals and losing. Or being up 2-1 going into game 4 and losing three straight. That’s very low.”

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Pregame: Raptors at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 22, 2014
Lowry, Kyle claps with teammates

Time: 7:30 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

TV: Fox Sports Ohio

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Wizards 91, Cavs 78; Jason Lloyd's 32 thoughts on disturbing loss

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 22, 2014
James, LeBron hands on hips

WASHINGTON: Thirty-two thoughts for 32 defensive rebounds in an ugly 91-78 loss to the Washington Wizards that seems to have sent panic into the streets…

1. Eleven games into the season, the Cavs are in the dark, David Blatt is concerned about everything and LeBron James is quoting Martin Luther King, Jr. If there is a “Break Glass in Case of Emergency” fire alarm inside Cleveland Clinic Courts, you get the feeling Lou Amundson is looking for the hammer.

2. I’m not sure how we’ve advanced so quickly from James saying he was happy with the progress the Cavs made in Thursday’s loss to the Spurs to now James writing this King quote on Twitter: “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” It all feels like a bit of an overreaction, even though admittedly this was a terrible loss to a quality opponent.

3. The most alarming part of this loss, at least for me, was the awful body language displayed by most everyone – beginning with James. He failed to get back defensively on multiple plays, hung his head and walked off the floor when he was clearly irritated with a Dion Waiters 3-point attempt and simply did not set the right example. He wasn’t alone, but as the leader of the team the rest of the players are going to follow his lead.

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Cavs sluggish again, lose third straight to fall under .500

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 21, 2014
Wall, John drives vs Cavs

WASHINGTON: Hours after LeBron James explained the extent to which his patience is being tested by this sluggish start, the Cavaliers did nothing Friday to ease his rattled nerves.

The Cavs set a season low for points and shooting percentage, again struggled defensively and lost to the Washington Wizards 91-78 at Verizon Center.

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Pregame: Cavs at Wizards

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 21, 2014
Beal, Bradley walking on court horizontal

Time: 8 p.m.; Place: Verizon Center

TV: ESPN, Fox Sports Ohio

Radio: WTAM 1100-AM, WAKR 1590-AM, WHBC 1480-AM, WMMS 100.7-FM,   La Mega 87.7-FM (Spanish)

Injury report: Cavs - Matthew Dellavedova (knee) out; Wizards - Martell Webster (back) out.

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LeBron James calls this season his biggest test; says if Love wants ball in post he just has to ask

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 21, 2014
James, LeBron hands on head

WASHINGTON: LeBron James called resurrecting the Cavaliers “my biggest test” on Friday and conceded he has a low tolerance for losing.

“It’s something I’m working on as well, which I knew from the beginning was going to be my biggest test to see how much patience I’ve got with the process,” James said Friday. “What helps me out is I’ve been through it before. But at the same time, I’m a winner and I want to win and I want to win now. It’s a fine line.”

The Cavaliers (5-5), on their second losing streak of the season, play at the Washington Wizards on Friday before hosting the Toronto Raptors on Saturday in a back-to-back against two of the young, up-and-coming teams in the Eastern Conference.

One of the problems the Cavs have to address is finding ways to get Kevin Love more comfortable in the offense. Love conceded after Wednesday’s loss to the Spurs he’s struggling to find a rhythm, perhaps because his percentage of looks from 3-point range are nearly double to what he’s accustomed.

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Spurs 92, Cavs 90: Jason Lloyd's 28 final thoughts following loss to Spurs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 20, 2014
Duncan, Tim ball as LBJ and Love grab

CLEVELAND: Twenty-eight thoughts for 28 defensive rebounds in a 92-90 loss to the Spurs…

1. I was chatting with an NBA talent evaluator recently about the minutes conundrum facing the Cavs and their stars. His reasoning for why LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love have been forced to play so many minutes was because of their poor defensive play.

2. If the Cavs could defend better, their stars wouldn’t have to play so much. But coach David Blatt knows he has to outscore teams right now to win games, so he’s going to the whip in November and riding his horses to the finish every night.

3. It’s not the individual defense that’s hurting the Cavs so much, he said, as the team defense. Rotations are slow, pick-and-roll defense is still a problem (and has been for most of the past four years). If the Cavs can clean that up, they won’t have to score 115 points to win games.

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LeBron James loses ball in final seconds, Spurs hold on for 92-90 victory

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 19, 2014
Parker, Tony dribble vs Irving

CLEVELAND: Tim Duncan had 19 points and 10 rebounds and the San Antonio Spurs held on for a 92-90 victory over the Cavaliers when LeBron James turned the ball over in the final seconds.

The Cavaliers were without any timeouts after guard Manu Ginobili split a pair of free throws with 9.1 seconds left. James grabbed the rebound and sprinted up the floor, but lost his dribble after he went behind his back trying to dribble around Ginobili for his fifth turnover of the night. The Spurs came up with the loose ball with 1.9 seconds left and Ginobili dribbled out the clock.

 Boris Diaw had 19 points, six rebounds and seven assists, Kawhi Leonard had 12 points and 10 rebounds and Ginboili had seven points, including the final three for the Spurs in what could be an NBA Finals preview.

James had 15 points, six rebounds and nine assists for the Cavs, who used their final timeout with 17 seconds left after a Ginobili lay-up gave the Spurs a 91-88 lead. There were five lead changes in the final 10 minutes, but the Spurs ultimately won their 10th straight in this series.

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Pregame: Spurs at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 19, 2014
Duncan, Tim cradling ball

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

TV: ESPN, Fox Sports Ohio

Radio: WTAM 1100-AM, WAKR 1590-AM, WHBC 1480-AM, WMMS 100.7-FM,   La Mega 87.7-FM (Spanish)

Injury report: Cavs - Matthew Dellavedova (knee) out; Spurs - Patty Mills (shoulder) out; Tiago Splitter (calf) out; Marco Belinelli (groin) out.

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Spurs' Popovich defends LeBron James' move back to Cleveland; James won't compare Cavs to Spurs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 19, 2014
Popovich, Gregg

CLEVELAND: Spurs coach Gregg Popovich defended LeBron James’ move back to Cleveland on Wednesday, calling him a brilliant player who should be allowed to do what he wants.

“He understands the game the way Magic did, the way Larry (Bird) did, the way Tim Duncan does,” Popovich said. “He knows a whole lot more about what he’s doing and what he has been doing than you all.

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Nuggets 106, Cavs 97: Jason Lloyd's 12 final thoughts on disappointing loss

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 17, 2014
James, LeBron fouled vs Denver

CLEVELAND: Twelve thoughts for 12 3-pointers by the Nuggets in a dismal 106-97 loss on Monday…

1. In chatting with team officials over the last couple days, this was the type of performance a few expected to see Saturday against the Hawks.

2. Coming off such an emotional, exhausting victory Friday at Boston, the internal consensus seemed to believe the Cavs would begin flat defensively against the Hawks and struggle to recover against a quality opponent. David Blatt even briefly referenced this type of scenario after Saturday’s big win.

3. Instead, the stumble came 48 hours later and against an inferior opponent. The Nuggets are bad in part because they can’t defend. But they looked terrific on this night.

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Cavs fall flat, lose to Nuggets 106-97 to end four-game winning streak

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 17, 2014

CLEVELAND: Arron Afflalo had a season-high 23 points, guard Ty Lawson had 24 points and 12 assists and the Denver Nuggets ended the Cavaliers’ four-game winning streak with a 106-97 victory Monday.

The Nuggets (3-7) led throughout the second half, building a 96-84 lead on a 3-pointer from forward Darrell Arthur, who had 13 points and 11 rebounds off the bench. Arthur made a quick exit when these two teams met 10 days ago – his flagrant-2 foul on Dion Waiters in the first half on Nov. 7 led to his ejection.

The Nuggets rebounded from a 16-point loss at New York on Sunday to take two of three on this brief East Coast trip, including a surprising win over what many expect will be the best team in the East this season.

LeBron James, named Eastern Conference Player of the Week earlier in the day, battled a head cold that forced him to miss the team’s morning shootaround. He missed his first five shots before recovering to finish with 22 points, nine rebounds and five assists, but the Cavs (5-4) turned the ball over six times in the third quarter and allowed the Nuggets to shoot 48 percent on the night.

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Pregame: Nuggets at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 17, 2014
Lawson, Ty dribble vs Knicks

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

TV: NBA TV, Fox Sports Ohio

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LeBron James misses shootaround, probable for Monday's game against Nuggets

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 17, 2014

CLEVELAND: LeBron James missed shootaround this morning with a head cold, but is expected to play tonight when the Cavs host the Denver Nuggets.

James was terrific last week, averaging 35 points, 7 rebounds and 7.6 assists in wins against the Pelicans, Celtics and Hawks. The Cavs have won four straight, including a 110-101 victory at Denver 10 days ago. 

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Cavs 127, Hawks 94: Jason Lloyd's 15 thoughts on record-setting night

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 15, 2014
Irving, Kyrie loses ball falling down

CLEVELAND: Fifteen thoughts for 15 points from Tristan Thompson in an impressive 127-94 pounding of the Atlanta Hawks…

1. With so many different directions to go after a game like this, let’s start here: Kyrie Irving didn’t take a shot in the first quarter. Well, he took two, but was fouled on both so they don’t count.

2. In the last four games, Irving has taken six shots in the first quarter. He has 10 assists in that same time.

3. Why does this matter? Because the morning the Cavs played the Utah Jazz, Irving was instructed it was his job to get Kevin Love and LeBron James going first offensively, then fall in line behind them. Irving responded by shooting a team-high 23 times, finishing with 34 points and 0 assists. Since that time, however, he’s come around.

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Cavs set franchise record with 19 3-pointers in 127-94 win over Atlanta Hawks

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 15, 2014
James, LeBron vs Hawks ball over head

CLEVELAND: Whatever magic the Cavaliers discovered in the fourth quarter on Friday carried over into Saturday. The buzzsaw is sharpening and the rest of the league is officially on notice.

The Cavaliers made their first 11 3-pointers and set an NBA record in the process in a lopsided 127-94 victory Saturday against the Atlanta Hawks.

LeBron James had 32 points, six rebounds and seven assists, Kevin Love had 13 points, six rebounds and five assists and Kyrie Irving had 20 points and five assists for the Cavs (5-3), who set a franchise record by making 19 3-pointers. 

The Hawks (5-4) began the night leading the league in 3-point percentage, but the Cavaliers beat them at their own game. They made all nine of their 3-point attempts in the first quarter to become the first team in league history to shoot 9-for-9 or better from 3-point range in a quarter, according to Elias Sports Bureau. They also tied a franchise record with 13 3-pointers in the first half.

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Cavs 122, Celtics 121: Jason Lloyd's 27 final thoughts on dramatic comeback

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 15, 2014
Rondo, Rajon too late final shot

BOSTON: Twenty-seven thoughts for 27 points from Kyrie Irving in a stunning 122-121 victory over the Celtics that should come with robbery charges…

1. With the way he is progressing and as well as he is playing, Joe Harris will be the starting shooting guard sooner rather than later. Much sooner. As in within a couple of weeks (or less), one source with knowledge of the team’s thinking said. At least one member of the Cavs’ brain trust is already in favor of the switch.

2. It was the rookie second-round pick – not Dion Waiters or Mike Miller – playing the final six minutes of Friday’s tight game. The Cavs closed the night with Kyrie Irving and Harris in the backcourt, Shawn Marion and LeBron James in the frontcourt and Kevin Love at center. That’s a lineup they could use more and more going forward.

3. Harris plays with high energy. He defends, he keeps the ball moving, he cuts hard to the basket. He does everything the Cavs need him to do, including knocking down open shots. He is a great fit with this starting lineup because he doesn’t need the ball, but he’s more than capable of knocking down open shots.

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LeBron James scores 41 points, Cavs erase 19-point, fourth-quarter deficit for 122-121 win

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 14, 2014

BOSTON: The Cavaliers’ offensive bazooka can cover a great deal of blemishes. Friday against the Celtics, it was powerful enough to erase a 19-point deficit in the fourth quarter.

LeBron James scored 41 points, Kyrie Irving had 27 and Kevin Love had 12 points and 15 rebounds in the Cavs’ stunning 122-121 victory at TD Garden. They trailed 101-84 entering the fourth, then former Cav Tyler Zeller scored the first basket of the quarter before the Cavaliers came roaring back.

Irving scored 12 points within the first three minutes of the fourth, James scored eight points in the final two minutes and the Cavs escaped despite perhaps their worst defensive night of the season.

The Celtics had a chance to win it at the buzzer, but Rajon Rondo never got a shot off. Joe Harris began the possession defending him, then Shawn Marion picked him up. Rondo temporarily bobbled his dribble and the buzzer sounded.

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Kevin Love denies any interest in joining Lakers next season

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 14, 2014
Love, Kevin backing down Kanter

BOSTON: Kevin Love denied a report he’s interested in joining the Lakers next season while poking fun at all the attention his handshake with Kyrie Irving has received.

“Whatever we were doing with our hands was about as true as me going to the Lakers,” Love said Friday. “Going to the Lakers, I don’t know where someone got that.”

A recent NBA.com report suggested Love will seriously consider opting out of his contract at the end of the season and join the Los Angeles Lakers. Love, like LeBron James, can essentially be a free agent after this season and next.

The handshake grabbed so much attention because it appeared Love and Irving were pretending to smoke a joint at the end, when actually they were twisting their mustaches. Love conceded after watching the video it looked worse than it actually is.

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Pregame: Cavs at Celtics

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 14, 2014
Rondo, Rajon

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: TD Garden Arena

 

 

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Dion Waiters returns to practice, expected to play Friday vs. Celtics

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 13, 2014

INDEPENDENCE: Dion Waiters returned to practice on Thursday and is expected to play Friday when the Cavs play at the Boston Celtics.

Waiters missed Monday’s win against the New Orleans Pelicans after falling hard to the court during last Friday’s victory at Denver.

“He’s probable for tomorrow,” Cavs coach David Blatt said. “We’ll see how his body responds to the work he did today, but we’re hoping he can get out there and play.”

Waiters scored 17 points off the bench against the Nuggets and seems to be settling into a reserve role. LeBron James has already suggested it’s the best role for him on this team and Waiters said he’s the one who went to Blatt and offered to come off the bench.

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After review, LeBron James did not have triple-double in Monday's win vs. Pelicans

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 11, 2014
James, LeBron drive vs Pelicans

After further review, LeBron James did not get a triple-double Monday night after all.

The league took away one of James’ rebounds and one of his assists after watching the tape of Monday’s 118-111 win over the New Orleans Pelicans, the Beacon Journal has learned.

In order to maintain the integrity of the statistics, the league’s review process of stats is fairly standard. Last year the league made a couple hundred changes to statistics, but few drew the attention that removing a triple-double from the league’s best player will receive.

“Through our normal review process, we noticed there were two errors in the statistical scoring last night and both have been adjusted,” NBA spokesman Tim Frank told the Beacon Journal.

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Cavs 118, Pelicans 111: Jason Lloyd's 23 final thoughts on LeBron James' triple-double and Cavs win

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 11, 2014
Pelicans_Cavaliers_Basketball0a28e~2

CLEVELAND: Twenty-three thoughts for No. 23 in a 118-111 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday…

1. In four years without LeBron James, the Cavs played 312 games and managed just one triple-double: Kyrie Irving last season in a win against the Utah Jazz. That’s it. James’ triple-double on Monday was the 51st in team history (45 regular season, six postseason) and he now has 35 of the last 36. Prior to tonight, James’ last regular season triple-double for the Cavs was March 16, 2010 at Detroit.

2. Somehow we managed to get through six questions during David Blatt’s postgame press conference and yet no one had asked about LeBron. So finally, after talking for more than 8 minutes, Blatt mentioned James himself.

3. “Everybody expects that. I don’t care that we all know he can do it, but you go out there and you have a triple-double and you lead your team in the moment of truth the way he did, it’s easy to overlook that guy,” Blatt said. “You come to expect it. That’s not a small thing he did out there tonight. The guy had a triple-double against an excellent basketball team and when we needed it.”

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LeBron James gets triple-double, Cavs' stars shine bright in 118-111 win over Pelicans

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 10, 2014
James, LeBron dribbling

CLEVELAND: LeBron James had 32 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists for his first triple-double of the season and the league’s newest “Big Three” dominated in the second half of the Cavs' 118-111 victory Monday against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Kyrie Irving had 32 points and nine assists and Love had 22 points and five rebounds, marking the first time all three of the Cavs' stars each scored at least 20 points in a game this season.

James and Irving combined for 30 of the Cavs’ 34 points in the third quarter and the Cavs outscored the Pelicans 16-1 to end the quarter, turning a five-point halftime deficit into an 85-79 lead entering the fourth. Kevin Love made four 3-pointers in the fourth, including three within the first four minutes.

Still, the Pelicans pulled within 101-99 on a lay-up from Anthony Davis, but Love countered with his fourth 3-pointer of the quarter and Irving completed a three-point play to extend the Cavs’ lead to 107-99 with 2:59 left. 

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Pregame: Pelicans at Cavs

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 10, 2014

Time: 7 p.m.; Place: Quicken Loans Arena

 

 

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Transcript: Dion Waiters meets with media to discuss recent comments

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 9, 2014
waiters, dion

INDEPENDENCE: An unedited transcript of Dion Waiters' media availability Sunday at Cleveland Clinic Courts.

Question: Do you feel you’re settling into that sixth man role?

Waiters: I've got to. I have to do whatever it takes for the team. I’m fine with it. I’ve been through it before my first two years so I can adjust to it easily.

Question: You always seem to wind up in that spot.

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Cavs 110, Nuggets 101; Jason Lloyd's 22 final thoughts to conclude this West Coast trip

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 8, 2014
James & Love

DENVER: Twenty-two thoughts for 22 points from LeBron James in a 110-101 win against the Denver Nuggets to conclude this West Coast trip…

1. I was chatting with Mike Miller before tonight’s game about his first year in Miami with LeBron James and the gang and how they used James’ initial return game to Cleveland as the galvanizing force. That Heat team soared after that night. I wondered if Miller is looking for a similar scenario here.

2. “There’s going to be a moment within this season, hopefully sooner than later, that will be that,” Miller said. “We’re definitely going to need it. It’ll happen it and you’ll see it, we’ll see it and the next couple games we’ll start playing well.”

3. This win over the Nuggets wasn’t that moment, but it was still good for this team to fly home coming off a victory. The Nuggets aren’t very good and they were missing their leading scorer in Ty Lawson, but that doesn’t really matter. The Jazz aren’t very good and the Cavs still lost. They needed a victory, regardless of the opponent, to start putting a tough week behind them.

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LeBron James has 22 points, 11 assists; Cavs move ball well in win against Nuggets

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 8, 2014
Irving, Kyrie dribbles vs Nuggets Robinson

DENVER: David Blatt said before Friday’s game he didn’t think the Cavaliers needed to find a veteran point guard while Matthew Dellavedova is injured. Perhaps that’s because the Cavs already had another point guard in LeBron James.

Blatt switched around his rotations and put the ball in James’ hands early. The result was crisp ball movement, a season-high in assists and a much-needed 110-101 victory against the Denver Nuggets.

James had 22 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds. He had six assists in the first quarter to match the Cavs’ team total in their loss Wednesday at the Utah Jazz. The Cavs shot 57 percent in the quarter, scored 38 points and finally played the type of basketball expected out of the team picked as the favorites in the Eastern Conference.

“When the ball is moving, it’s just the karma of the game,” James said. “You move the ball early, you get guys feeling the ball, touching the ball and everyone feels comfortable. It results in seven guys having double figures and it’s huge for our team.”

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Pregame: Cavs at Nuggets

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 7, 2014
Robinson, Nate

Time: 10:30 p.m.; Place: Pepsi Center

 

 

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LeBron James, Kyrie Irving deny locker room exchange

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 7, 2014
Irving, Kyrie drive vs Jazz horizontal

DENVER: LeBron James and Kyrie Irving denied a report there was any sort of exchange in the locker room Tuesday following a 19-point loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.

“Those reports are untrue,” James said. “We have not had a verbal exchange. But I understand that negativity sells. No one wants to hear a good story. Those reports are not true. They’re very false.”

At 1-3 entering Friday’s nationally televised game against the Denver Nuggets, there isn’t much positive right now surrounding the Cavs, who lost at the buzzer Wednesday against the Utah Jazz.

ESPN.com reported Thursday that James approached Irving about the direction of the Cavs’ offense and the way Irving has dominated the ball. James said after that game Tuesday night “a lot of bad habits been built up the past couple years” within the young Cavs players.

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Jazz 102, Cavs 100: Jason Lloyd's 31 final thoughts on third loss in four games

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 6, 2014
Hayward, Gordon shoots game winner over Tristan

SALT LAKE CITY: Thirty-one thoughts for 31 points from LeBron James in a 102-100 loss to the Utah Jazz at the buzzer…

1. David Blatt tried to establish the Cavs’ food chain during Wednesday’s film session and team meeting. According to a source with knowledge of the meeting, Blatt essentially told the players that LeBron James and Kevin Love eat first and that it’s Kyrie Irving’s job as point guard to feed them. Irving can then find his own rhythm after the first two guys get going.

2. Yet when Wednesday’s game ended, Irving had 34 points, 0 assists and led the team in shots (23). Love, meanwhile, was 2-for-10. He didn’t have a basket after the first quarter and he only took five shots in the second half (missed them all). He did, however, go 9-for-11 from the free-throw line.

3. The Cavs tied a franchise-low with just six assists. Six. It happened two other times, on Dec. 15, 1970 at the Knicks and March 17, 2011 at the Blazers. That was the first season in franchise history (they went 15-67) and then the first season after James’ departure when they lost 26 in a row at one point.

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LeBron James, Kyrie Irving combine for 65 points, but Cavs fall at buzzer on Hayward jumper

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014

SALT LAKE CITY: The ball movement remained stagnant, the defense only marginally improved for brief stretches and the Cavaliers are facing their first losing streak of the season after another crushing loss on the road.

Gordon Hayward’s long, contested jumper over an outstretched Tristan Thompson at the buzzer handed the Cavs a 102-100 loss after LeBron James scored six points in the final 13 seconds to tie it.

Kyrie Irving had 34 points and James had 31, but the Cavs suffered  their second loss in as many nights to fall to 1-3 on the year.

The Cavs registered just six assists on the night as a young and inexperienced Jazz team hammered them inside for 46 paint points and outrebuonded them 41-30. The Cavs trailed by as many as 16 in the third quarter and didn’t take their first lead until midway through the fourth.

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Shawn Marion inserted into starting lineup, Dion Waiters moved to bench for Cavaliers

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014
Marion, Shawn horizontal

SALT LAKE CITY: Shawn Marion will start at shooting guard tonight for the Cavaliers and Dion Waiters will come off the bench, the Cavs announced Tuesday. Coach David Blatt did not discuss the change during his pregame availability, but this move is likely at least somewhat tied to Matthew Dellavedova’s knee injury.

Dellavedova was injured during Tuesday’s loss at Portland, and while the Cavs are offering no timetable yet, a team source confirmed the early indication that he could miss at least a month. That leaves the Cavs scrambling to find a backup point guard, which Waiters could effectively fill with the second unit. But there is a strong belief within the organization Dellavedova’s injury simply provided an avenue for coach David Blatt to begin experimenting with a lineup that is off to a tough start.

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Cavs' Matthew Dellavedova ruled out for tonight's game vs. Jazz with knee injury

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014
Delly smiles

SALT LAKE CITY: Matthew Dellavedova will miss tonight’s game at the Utah Jazz with a left knee injury, the Cavs announced. Dellavedova injured the knee late in Tuesday’s 101-82 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. He is expected to receive further testing today in Salt Lake City before an official diagnosis and timeline is rendered.

Dellavedova has been a key rotation piece through the early start to the season. He played the entire overtime period in place of Dion Waiters in a win at Chicago and again replaced Waiters midway through the fourth quarter of Tuesday’s defeat. His loss leaves the Cavs with just newly signed Will Cherry as the only traditional backup point guard to Kyrie Irving.

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Pregame: Cavs at Jazz

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014

Time: 9 p.m.; Place: EnergySolutions Arena

 

 

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Blazers 101, Cavs 82: Jason Lloyd's 24 final thoughts on learning to win

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014

PORTLAND, ORE.: Twenty-four thoughts following a miserable 101-82 loss to the Trail Blazers…

1. One of my favorite scenes from “Bull Durham” is when Nuke LaLoosh is throwing a two-hit shutout, but he shakes off Kevin Costner when Costner calls for the fastball. Disgusted the rookie would have the arrogance to shake him off after throwing a gem, Costner tells the batter the curve is coming to teach young LaLoosh a lesson.

2. “Charlie, here comes the deuce,” Costner says. “And when you speak of me, speak well.”

3. James' last basket came with 6:39 left in the second quarter. He took just 12 shots and he missed his last six. But watching James’ demeanor during the game and listening to him afterwards left the impression he’s teaching the young players a lesson: Continue playing as you have in the past and you’ll continue to lose in the future.

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Offense sputters after fast start, Cavs pounded by Blazers 101-82

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 5, 2014

PORTLAND, ORE.: The Cavaliers shot 37 percent (28 percent after making their first 10 shots) and were blown out by the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday 101-82. Kevin Love had 22 points and 10 rebounds, but LeBron James had 11 points on 4-for-12 shooting. His last basket came with 6:39 left in the second quarter and he missed his final six attempts.

It was a bizarre turn after the Cavs were red-hot to start the game. But even after making their first 10 shots – including a 29-foot heave from James – they only led 27-23.

The Cavs scored 34 points in the first quarter and 48 the rest of the night.

Damian Lillard had 27 points and seven assists, Wes Matthews had 21 points and Robin Lopez had 19 points and six rebounds for the Blazers. Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters combined to shoot 6-for-28 for the Cavs, who play at Utah on Wednesday.

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LeBron James says he has no issue with Damian Lillard after series of derogatory tweets exposed

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 4, 2014

PORTLAND, ORE.: LeBron James said he has no issue with Blazers point guard Damian Lillard after a series of old tweets disparaging James were uncovered from Lillard’s Twitter account.

Deadspin exposed the old tweets from Lillard that werer originally dug up by a user on the website imgur. A number of players were caught in the net of unflattering tweets. Prior to his senior season at Weber State, Lillard ripped James after the Heat lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA Finals for being fake and calling him vulgar names.

“I didn’t even see the tweets,” James said Tuesday morning prior to the Cavs game against the Blazers. “I don’t really get into social media like that. He came to me before it even got to me and we hashed it out right there. So it’s no big deal.”

Lillard told the Oregonian last week the series of tweets were irresponsible.

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Pregame lineups and notes: Cavs at Blazers

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 4, 2014

Time: 10 p.m.; Place: Moda Center

 

 

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Cavs release A.J. Price, will reportedly sign Will Cherry

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 1, 2014

The Cavs released third string point guard A.J. Price on Saturday. Yahoo Sports reported the team will sign point guard Will Cherry in the coming days.

Cherry is an undersized scoring guard. He played on the Cavs’ Summer League team and was the talk of Vegas for a couple days. He was released by the Toronto Raptors near the end of preseason.  

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Cavs 114, Bulls 108 OT: Jason Lloyd's 15 final thoughts

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 1, 2014

CHICAGO: Fifteen thoughts after an impressive 114-108 overtime victory against the Chicago Bulls…

1. LeBron James shot the ball 30 times tonight. Thirty. Six of those came in overtime, but 30 shots is still a significant number.

2. In his last season with the Cavs, James got up at least 30 shots in four different games. In his four years in Miami, he never shot 30 times more than once in a season. The last time he did it was March 3 when he scored a career-high 61 points against the Charlotte Bobcats.

3. What’s it all mean? In the big picture, I’m not sure yet. But it’s worth watching. James became obsessed with shot efficiency when he was in Miami. In Thursday’s clunker, he was passive. He said tonight he thought that contributed to some of those eight turnovers he had against the Knicks. Tonight he attacked from the start – he had 10 shots in the first quarter alone.

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