With Kyrie Irving out another game, the Cleveland Cavaliers (19-38) will look for points to be generated in another way. Last night Shaun Livingston was inserted into the starting lineup, and it was the combination of him and Dion Waiters running the offense. The backcourt combined for 40 points in last night’s road win against the Chicago Bulls.
Opponents Blog: Raptors Rapture
Venue: Quicken Loans Arena
Tipoff: Wednesday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m.
Betting Line: Raptors by -4.5
Where you can watch: Fox Sports Ohio
Where you can listen: WTAM (1100 AM), WFUN (970 AM)
After their end of January trade with the Memphis Grizzlies, the Toronto Raptors are 7-4 with Rudy Gay in the starting lineup. Gay has averaged 20.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists since he has been with the Raptors. This deal was definitely a good trade for the team, but it leaves some wondering with the combination of Gay, DeMar DeRozan and rookie Slam Dunk contest winner Terrence Ross can co-exist together on the game roster. So far, DeRozan and Gay have played well together, but Ross has found himself getting added minutes on the bench since Gay arrived.
The Cavaliers won the last time these two teams met. It was a game where Irving had one of those “Kyrie-freaking-Irving” moments. With the Cavs down two, Kyrie received the inbounds pass with 12 seconds left. Head coach Byron Scott drew up a play in the timeout, but it didn’t matter – Irving already knew what he was going to do. He dribbled the ball between his legs so slowly over the timeline into the frontcourt and stared Raptors guard Alan Anderson in the eye before pulling up three feet behind the three-point line and drilling the game winner with 0.7 seconds remaining.
Unfortunately, this is unlikely to happen again for the Cavs due to Irving’s status for tonight’s game.
Waiters continued his hot-shooting month last night, scoring 25 points on 10-of-16 shooting. In the last game against Toronto, Waiters only scored 6 points on 3-of-10 shooting. Like last night, if the Cavs want any chance of winning, Waiters must perform well.
The Raptors last played Monday when they lost to the Washington Wizards. Toronto struggled scoring and shot 36.7 percent from the field and 26.3 percent from three.