NBA Playoffs: 3 Cavaliers X-Factors entering Game 6 against Orlando Magic

The Cleveland Cavaliers need one more win to advance in the NBA Playoffs. Now is the time to step up.
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Five
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Five / Jason Miller/GettyImages
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Cleveland needs Marcus Morris, Sr. to do what he did in Game 5

Ahead of Game 5, Marcus Morris, Sr. only saw the court after the game was out of hand, and the Cavs had no path back to victory. Niang was slotted into the backup four spot instead, but the Magic's constant offensive attack on Niang and his lost three-point shooting led Bickerstaff to make a change last minute. Morris joined the team late in the regular season as a buy-out candidate, but he seems to fit the team perfectly as though he was there all year.

Morris knows Bickerstaff after time together on the Houston Rockets. He can recognize Bickerstaff's gameplans and slot himself in where needed. Additionally, his gritty physicality has stopped Orlando from trying to assert themselves as a bully in the series. Moritz Wagner has embraced the villain role in Cleveland, but Morris' toughness took center stage in Game 5. He also connected on two threes out of five attempts, finishing the night with 12 points.

Cavaliers big man Jarrett Allen missed Game 5 and did not practice with the team a day before Game 6, leaving his health status unknown with less than a day before Game 6. If Allen is out for the Cavs again, then Morris' skillset will be invaluable for Cleveland. Morris has a chance to make a major impact, and his veteran leadership will be able to lead the Cavaliers to the win if he can stay hot.

While Morris will never be Cleveland's first option off the bench every night, he contributed a worthy 26 minutes in his first chance for meaningful minutes in the rotation. If the Cavaliers hope to shut the Magic down on the road, they need to keep Morris in the lineup. He showed that his defense and strength are still there at 34 years old, and his instant contributions from deep make him a necessary part of the rotation going forward. If teams continue to bully Niang on defense, Bickerstaff has found the solution and needs to use it.

The Cleveland Cavaliers will enter Kia Center for the biggest game of their year with a 7:00 pm Eastern Time tip off. With a 3-2 series lead, the Cavaliers are looking to end the Orlando Magic season. The winner of this series will take on the 64-18 Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Semifinal round.

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