Mar 26, 2014; Auburn Hills, MI, USA; Detroit Pistons forward Kyle Singler (25) guards Cleveland Cavaliers guards Dion Waiters (3) during the forth quarter at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Cleveland won 97-96. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Game 79: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Detroit Pistons Preview

LAST TIME OUT

The Cavaliers lost a hearbreaker at home to Charlotte in overtime, effectively ending the Cavaliers playoff hopes this year. Despite a tremendous performance by Kyrie Irving (44 points, 16 – 31 FG), the rest of the Cavaliers struggled mightily offensively, with only one other player (Dion Waiters) scoring in double-figures for the Wine and Gold. With still a very slim chance to make the playoffs, the Cavs should come out  and still play hard against a Pistons team they should beat.

THIS TIME UP

The Opponent: Detroit Pistons

Record: 29 – 49 (12 – 26 away)

Tipoff: Wednesday, April 9th at 7:00 – Quicken Loans Arena

Where you can watch: Fox Sports Ohio / NBA League Pass

Where you can listen: WTAM 1100

Previous Matchup: 97 – 96 Win in Detroit on March 26th

Opponent’s Blog: Life on Dumars

Injury Report

Pistons: Josh Smith (Day-to-day, knee), Will Bynum (Day-to-Day, foot)

Cavaliers: None

Keep the Effort Level Up / Play Like Your Job Depends on It

Despite having almost no chance to make the playoffs, it is still mathematically possible. With that being said, there is no reason for the Cavs to still not come out and play with a sense of urgency. In addition, with the offseason looming, this is the last chance for some guys to make their case to stay on the team next year. Against a very beatable Pistons club, I’d hope that the Cavs will come out and show that they haven’t given up on this season yet.

Control the Interior

If the Pistons are going to beat you, it’s going to be because they dominate you on the interior. Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond are a very formidable combo, and have quietly both had exceptional years. If Varejao, Thompson, and co. can limit Drummond and Monroe and force guys like Rodney Stuckey and Brandon Jennings to shoot jumpers then the Cavs will have a very good chance to win this game.

Help Kyrie Out

Kyrie Irving has been playing brilliant offensively lately, but he needs help. Against the Bobcats while he shot over 50% on 31 shot attempts (16 – 31) the rest of the team shot a combined 29% from the field. Those dreadful numbers doomed the Cavs in that game, and although Kyrie has been playing great, asking him to score 40+ a game is too much.

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers Kyrie Irving

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