Last night in Cleveland proved to be an intense one. With Kyrie Irving out, the Cavaliers still managed to put on a great show for NBA fans in a double-overtime loss.
Damian Lillard has already established himself as a floor leader for the Blazers, and attempted to win the game for his team at the end of regulation. Lillard got to the rim but missed the layup, after which LaMarcus Aldridge tipped the ball in but only after the final buzzer.
In overtime, Dion Waiters missed the game-tying step-back jumper, but Alonzo Gee picked up the slack and scored on a layup, tying the game at 103, with 6 seconds to go.
Not short on confidence, Lillard had the ball in his hands again but was unable to connect on his game-winning shot. Nicolas Batum gathered the rebound and hit a quick shot at the buzzer, to the Cavaliers’ disbelief. However, after further review, it was clear that Batum was just a split-second too late to get the shot off and the teams geared up for some more basketball.
Dion Waiters has been inconsistent this year, but the 4th overall pick of the 2012 NBA draft has shown promise nonetheless. Unfortunately for the Cavs and Waiters, he rolled his ankle in a nasty way, and was forced to leave the game.
With the shot clock turned off, the Blazers were trailing by one point, and went to LaMarcus Aldridge to try and win the game. Aldridge missed on a long jumper and after Hickson got his shot blocked, the Blazers had to foul with 2.5 seconds remaining. Nicolas Batum would get his number called on the following possession and he decided to do this:
Anderson Varejao scored 19 points and grabbed 17 rebounds for Cleveland, while Tyler Zeller came off the bench for a double-double with 14 points and 10 boards. Alonzo Gee led the Cavaliers in scoring with 22.
Lillard, Batum and Aldridge all scored over 20 points for the Blazers and Wesley Matthews had a double-double with 11 points and 10 assists.
Cleveland are now 4-11 as they await Irving’s return. Blazers snap a 4-game losing streak with yesterday’s victory and are now 7-10 on the season.
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