Rookie Dion Waiters was a late scratch from the lineup tonight after suffering an ankle injury late in Saturday’s game against the Portland Trail Blazers. He joined Kyrie Irving on the injury report as he continues to nurse his left index finger.
With the Cavaliers missing their two starting guards in tonight’s matchup in Detroit against the Pistons, the Cavs were going to have to rely on players to score who they normally don’t. After the first quarter performance this team put together, you knew it was going to be a long night. After the first quarter the Cavs faced a 30-17 deficit and it didn’t get any better in the second quarter, and went into half down 17.
Normally, I would talk about some key plays, or good things the Cavs did during the game, but I couldn’t really find much. So I’m going to list a few things that got my attention:
- The Cavs made three three-pointers tonight; they shot 20, which calculates to 15 percent from long distance. As a team, the Cavs shot 34 percent from the field.
- The Cavs frontcourt got absolutely dominated in the paint in the first half. The Pistons had 13 blocks on the night, most of which I’m assuming came on Tristan Thompson. But the Cavs made some adjustments during halftime and stopped them form getting easy points in the paint. The final tally of points in the paint was 46-44 in favor of the Pistons.
- It seemed like the Cavs were not getting the same calls the Pistons were. Everybody heard Austin Carr complaining about it on Fox Sports Ohio, but even the replays showed evidence of it. Whether you think they were fouls or not is your opinion, it just felt like the Cavs weren’t getting the same calls as the opposing team; something that has been an issue all year.
- C.J. Miles, who only played nine minutes tonight, scored eight points. He shot 3-6 from the field and provided a little spark off the bench in the second quarter. It is obvious coach Scott remains frustrated with Miles’ poor play this season, but tonight Miles looked good in the small amount of playing time he received.
- With Irving and Waiters out, the Cavs had no one to rely on to score. Since Irving has been out, Alonzo Gee has really stepped up his play. He scored 22 against Portland Saturday, but was cold as ice in Detroit. He scored only six points on 2-of-10 shooting.
Even with all the bad things the Cavs did, they found themselves within six points with about three minutes remaining. The Pistons easily could have put the Cavs away at the end of the third quarter, but it felt like they did everything they could to give the Cavs chances to come back. Unfortunately the Cavs weren’t able to capitalize on the Pistons’ poor second half performance.
This was a game where it felt like both teams didn’t deserve to win, but of course each game has a winner and loser. The Cavs fell to the Pistons, 89-79. Anderson Varejao continued his All-Star season with 17 points and 18 rebounds.
This team is in desperate need of some home cooking and need to remain home for a few games. This brutal early road schedule has really hurt the Cavs in their win/loss record and has affected health of their players.
The Cavs have a day off and return home, for one game only, Wednesday as they welcome the Chicago Bulls into The Q for the second time this season. Last time these two teams met, the Bulls blew the Cavaliers out by the final score of 115-86. Tipoff is scheduled for 8:00 p.m.