Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Feed: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Los Angeles Clippers [11/05/12]


The Cleveland Cavaliers wins their first road game of the season, defeating the Clippers 108 to 101. This marks the first time Kyrie Irving faced off against the Point god, Chris Paul, after missing the first match up with an injury. The up and coming guard did not shy away in this contest, getting a double double, scoring 24 points and handed out 10 assists.

Despite shooting terribly from the field (35 percent, 8 of 23), he knocked down 50 percent of his threes, hitting 4 in total. However, the star was neither Kyrie or CP3, it was Dion Waiters, the rookie from Syracuse, who was fire from beyond the arc, draining 7 threes that contributed to his 28 point finish.

The Clippers began the game with a 7 - 0 run that was immediately relinquished in the first quarter, allowing the Cavs to pull a 10 - 3 run, 16 Kyrie points and a lead that they never managed to come back from. They gave away the ball 25 times (to Cleveland's 17) and allowed them 18 offensive rebounds (double of what Clippers have) that resulted in to many points.

Los Angeles made a late push in the fourth, with Jamal Crawford (19 points, 4 threes) and Chris Paul (17 points and 9 assists)  running the show. They tied the game a few times but their costly mistakes on defense gave the game away. With 28 seconds left in the game, the Cavs were up 104 to 101, Kyrie Irving was left uncontested by the Clippers and he made them pay with the dagger that sealed the game.

This photo says it all.
Offensive End:
Cleveland relies on their back court for everything, if either Kyrie or Dion has a bad game, they are likely going to lose. Their best option is to just run and push the ball to the other side as fast as possible, they score lots of point when the defense is unsettled.

If the ball goes through the hoop, it is usually from a jump shot because they just don't have the guys to score in the paint, besides the occasional Kyrie drive and put backs from their big men (from offensive rebounds), everything else comes from mid range and extended.

Their main play was a screen for either Irving or Waiters, who will either shoot/drive right away. Their were some circumstances in this game where the Clippers decide to left Varejao (the screener) open, giving the Cavalier guards an easy pass to MOP head for a shot from 15 out.

Los Angeles likes to get it in to the post, with Blake Griffin, in the low block, attention will be drawn, allowing Blake to kick it out to the open shooters waiting outside. Chris Paul dribble penetration will do the same and if he decides to run a pick and roll, it will come up high, so the point god can find the holes in the defense.

Defensive End:
Both teams played atrocious defense tonight, the Clips did turn the ball over 25 times but it all came from bad passes and carelessness. They both must improve their transition defense, because they give up a lot of easy buckets.

The only adjustments I caught, was the Cavs packing the paint in the second half and the Clippers employing double teams on guards.

The Moments:
  • DeAndre Jordan air balled another free throw. Someone needs to do an Over/Under for this. 
  • Eric Bledsoe blew a wide open dunk with no one near him.
  • The commentators called Bledsoe, Chris Paul multiple times.
  • Chris Paul called one of the refs a "MFer" in what seems to be the angriest reaction from the point god. I am super bummed that I am unable to find the GIF for you because it was a glorious moment.
Rookie Watch:

Dion Waiters was monster tonight, showing supreme confidence and hitting shots when his team needed him.

Tyler Zeller left in the middle of the game after taking DeAndre Jordan's elbow to his eye, but in the 24 minutes he played, he grabbed 7 boards to go with his 15 points.

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