Cavs Complacency Knots Series at 2

Mike Brown said it best after Sunday evening’s matchup with the Boston Celtics when he said, “They were the aggressors.”

After starting the game ahead 7-0, the Cleveland Cavaliers were outscored 31-22 in the first quarter and failed to close the gap heading into the break.  A productive third quarter allowed Cleveland the opportunity to head into the fourth quarter down only two points – which sounds great when you consider the lack of urgency the Cavs played with and the simple fact that the best player in the world wears Wine & Gold.

MVPs show up in the fourth quarter of a Game 4 when their team needs them the most.  They make big plays to lead their team to victory on the road against a rival opponent.  LeBron James did neither one of those things and allowed the Celtics to escape with a 97-87 victory.

And it wasn’t just LeBron.  Antawn Jamison missed way too many easy buckets throughout the entire game.  Mo Williams couldn’t get it going again.  Anthony Parker fumbled way too many passes.  Delonte West sported the team’s worst (in)efficiency rating at -18 and Anderson Varejao couldn’t muster up more than three rebounds.

The Good News:  

- After three games of below average effort, the Cavs still hold home court advantage and head into Tuesday night’s Game 5 matchup with the series knotted at 2-2.

The Bad News:

- The series is tied at 2-2 and Paul Pierce has yet to have an above average performance.

- Mo Williams has played one productive quarter in 16 quarters this series.

- Though he’s drawing a lot of fouls, Shaquille O’Neal really has not played very well in four games this series.  He’s not knocking down shots (though he’s making foul shots) and he’s picking way too many cheap fouls – I want to see him knock somebody down like did to Rondo in Game 1.

All in all, it wasn’t a great performance by any stretch of the word by the Cleveland Cavaliers.  LeBron let the Celtics set the tone early and they capitalized on it.  They’ll be back in Cleveland for Tuesday night’s Game 5 matchup – hopefully with a little more energy than they showed off tonight.

Topics: Anderson Varejao, Antawn Jamison, Anthony Parker, Cavaliers, Celtics, Cleveland, Cleveland Cavaliers, Delonte West, KJG, Lebron, Lebron James, LeBron James, Mo Williams, MVP, NBA, Playoffs, Recap, Shaq, Shaquille O’Neal

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  • Jake Norman

    Don’t be such a hater. What happened to “ALL TOGETHER” You want to preach those words, you better stick to them. AJ and Shaq played very well. DON’T BE SUCH A HATER WHEN THEY LOSE!

  • Will

    I was upset with today’s game. The last game was so awesome; I wanted to see them dominate like that again. I realize that I was simply being greedy. I really do wish they could play with the same level of intensity from game to game. Boston (except for Rondo) does not have the depth or overall sped to keep up with the CAVS if they keep moving. Also, LeBron got burned by Tony Allen and Pierce – not watching them on “D”. That’s how Shaq got his 5th foul.

  • Mark

    None of the other high seeds are struggling like this, and we are supposed to be the best team in the league. Why can the other teams step it up but we can’t? This is embarrassing. We were supposed to be hungry for a championship, now they don’t seem to give a damn. Game 3 was a bright spot, but why can’t they put in that kind of effort every night? This is the playoffs!

    • bobdevo

      None of the other “high seeds” are playing the Celtics. The Magic got Charlotte and Atlanta. Does anyone think Atlanta would win a game from the Cavs? Similarly, the Lakers got a Utah Jazz team without a legit center and beset by injuries.

  • http://www.cavfanatic.com/cnorman2?pref_tab=my_site Cody Norman

    Jake- I’m not being a hater at all. I’m just calling it like I saw it. Antawn Jamison missed way too many bunnies and, as LeBron’s supposed Scottie Pippen, did not play well at all. I never said Shaq played poorly – he just hasn’t played all that well either. I’m not happy with the fact that he is picking up 5 fouls a game and, outside of game 1, has yet to pick up a good playoff foul. There’s nobody that is a bigger fan of Andy, Delonte and AP than me (and maybe Patrick) but when they play poorly – which they did – I have no problem saying that either.

    Will & Mark – I really have no idea why the Cavs can’t seem to bring the same intensity every game. Windy asked Mike Brown that question a couple different times in the postgame interview yesterday and he kept saying, “I don’t know.” And when they asked LeBron why his team can’t play with a sense of urgency every night, he said, “I think we did.” I respectfully disagree. We’ll see what they’re made of on Tuesday night back in the Q…and again on Thursday at the Garden. I don’t want to see this series go 7 games!

  • bobdevo

    On at leasts two occasions, the Cavs let Rondo penetrate and wimped out: once when LeBron tried to get a charging call. Instead of passively taking the charge, he should have crushed Rondo while attempting to block the shot. If a good faith effort is made to block the ball, a hard foul is just a hard foul.

    Similarly, if Shaq is going to make contact with Rondo . . . the MAKE CONTACT . . and put him on his butt big-time.

    I’m not talking dirty here, I’m talking play-off old-school clean hard fouls.

  • http://www.cavfanatic.com/cnorman2?pref_tab=my_site Cody Norman

    I agree 100% bobdevo. I want Rondo to feel every foul he takes; there’s no reason he shouldn’t.