LAST TIME OUT
The Cleveland Cavaliers (16-33, 5-20 away) have been a complete mess as of late. After losing their sixth straight game against the short-handed Los Angeles Lakers, owner Dan Gilbert decided to make the move to fire GM Chris Grant. Just when you think things can’t get worse for this squad, they somehow do. There have been multiple reports of disagreements amongst players that haven’t been confirmed but seem to be true. It’s ugly, and I’m curious to see if it can get any worse, because I don’t what can be worse than the current situation.
THIS TIME UP
The Opponent: Washington Wizards
Record: 24-24 (12-12 home)
Tipoff: Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. – Verizon Center
Where you can watch: Fox Sports Ohio/NBA League Pass
Where you can listen: WTAM 1100
Previous Matchup: 98-91 Cavaliers loss at Quicken Loans Arena – Nov. 20, 2013
Opponent’s Blog: Wiz of Awes
Cavaliers: PG Kyrie Irving (GAME-TIME DECISION, illness)
Leave the Past Behind
It’s been an extremely rough stretch for the Cavaliers lately. Everything that could possible go wrong has, and more. If Cleveland wants to get out of this current rut that they’re in, they’re going to need to forget what happened over the first 49 games and focus on what lies ahead. Playoffs aren’t out of the question at this point, but it seems like a far stretch because of the current state of this team. If this team can band together – starting with the notion that they’re 0-0 – then I still hold some ray of hope. It starts on Friday, however.
John Wall Should be Starting the All-Star Game
Whether Kyrie plays Friday night or not, all eyes should be on John Wall. He has been the leader that this Wizards team has needed, bringing them from the bottom cellar of the Eastern Conference to mediocrity in one year. This was what Kyrie was supposed to do in his third season with the Cavs, but it obviously hasn’t happened yet. Wall has proved to be the better leader and better all-around player up to this point. If Irving plays, I don’t have much faith that he’ll be able to stop him. If he’s not on the court, look for Wall to shred the Cleveland defense even more than he would have with the weak defender that Irving is out of the lineup.
Who Needs to Step Up For Cleveland?
Simple answer: Everyone. This team will not succeed behind one good performance night in and night out. Teams win championships, players don’t. It boils down to that. A consistent team effort will be the only thing that can save this team at this point in the season.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Cleveland gets their shit together and wins this one. The Wizards are a very bipolar squad and haven’t been able to effectively clear the .500 hump as of yet. I think the Cavaliers come out angry and looking to prove something, thus resulting in a victory.