1 stud and 1 dud for Cavs from OT win over Mavs on Saturday

Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Aaron Josefczyk-USA TODAY Sports)
Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Aaron Josefczyk-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Throughout an 82-game season, there are going to be nights when a team is going to have to scratch and claw to get a win.

Last night was one of those games for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Despite facing a Dallas Mavericks team without Luka Doncic and Spencer Dinwiddie, the Mavericks gave the Cavaliers a competitive game.

On Saturday night, the main thorn in the Cavaliers side was veteran point guard Kemba Walker, who was playing in just his third game of the season. Walker, who was just 4-of-13 from beyond the arc, did most of his damage from inside that arc.

Walker scored a game-high 32 points, and big man Christian Wood also had a productive scoring night with 26 points, including hitting five critical three-point shots.

Neither team shot the ball particularly well in the first half, and Cleveland was just 4-of-19 from beyond the arc but only trailed by two points after two quarters.

Cleveland was clearly fatigued after playing on Friday night against the Indiana Pacers, and a game that required a fourth quarter comeback at that. Isaac Okoro was the high-scoring Cavalier at the half with 10 points, as Donovan Mitchell was held to 3-of-8 shooting (0-of-4 from 3-point range) and 8 points.

The three-point shooting numbers did not get any better for Cleveland in the third quarter, as they were 0-of-7 and were just 4-of-26 for the game.

Free throws were also a struggle for the Cavaliers as a whole through three quarters, as they were 7-of-15 from the line.

To their credit, Cleveland didn’t solely try to shoot their way out of their slump. They attacked the basket and, through three quarters, had 44 of their 67 points in the paint.

Cleveland showed their fighting spirit in the final quarter, as they battled back and had a chance to win the game in regulation. However, Mitchell was called for a questionable offensive foul, and the game went to overtime.

Both teams were gassed after 48 minutes, and the play in OT reflected as such. A grand total of seven points was scored in the extra five minutes, and both teams combined to shoot 3-of-14 from the field.

But at the game’s end, Cleveland won with one final defensive stop, and they escaped with a one-point win.

The Cavaliers now get a much-needed day of rest on Sunday before welcoming in a team Mitchell knows quite well, the Utah Jazz.

As for the game last night, let’s get to the stud of the game first before the dud.