Saturday, November 04, 2006

Charlotte 92, Cleveland 88

some random thoughts from tonight's loss

I know they had to lose sometime. But man, to the Bobcats? The Cavaliers own them, they were 7-0 before tonight. I was kind of surprised they were in Charlotte the night after visiting San Antonio, but I don't want to make excuses.

First Half = Good. The Cavs led at halftime 50-46. They got all of the Bobcat's big men into foul trouble. Z played well and the Cavs got everything they wanted inside.

Second Half = Notsomuch. I'm not sure if the Cavs expected to just walk out there and beat the Bobcats, but it didn't look like they brought the same intensity in the second half. I figured they would keep feeding the big men and just try to foul out Charlotte's bigs. Guess not.

More jumpshots? Really? The second half they just chucked the ball up. Hughes, Jones, Marshall, James, Gooden, Wesley... the entire team just started jacking up shots. I really don't think it was because of Charlotte's defense either.

The offense broke down. The movement we saw versus Washington and San Antonio was non-existent tonight. And when they did run the offense, they took their sweet time setting it up. They looked slow and lethargic in the second half. A few times they set up Z in the post and had the other four players all on the same side of the floor; I'm not really sure why they were all bunched up, but it happened at least 2 times (I figured you'd want a guy on the other side of the floor for an easy outlet if a double team comes. But whatever).

LeBron? Non-factor. I can't believe I'm writing this, but James didn't really have an impact on the game. He was only 3-13 from the floor and finished with 16 points. At points he had Adam freaking Morrison guarding him and he just passed out of it. The post game was almost non-existent and he settled for jumpshots just like the rest of the team.

The defense didn't make the trip from San Antonio. Raymond Felton killed the Cavs last season and well, he scored 23 points tonight. Felton is a type of guard who can really hurt the Cavaliers- you know, a quick one.

I can't wait for the Bobcats to come to Cleveland. Late in the game Sean May blocked a shot on one of LeBron's rare drives to the hoop. After the block, he stared down James. I'm just anticipating James dunking on May all night.

Drew Gooden, monster. Thank God for Drew tonight he almost single handedly kept the Cavaliers in the game. He was 7-14 with 21 points and 16 rebounds. If Gooden gets involved in the game early on, he seems to stay focused all game long. Tonight he got the ball early and often and was a big factor throughout (he did take one awful jumpshot late in the game. But so did the rest of the team).

I could've used some more fouls. To me, it seemed that Hughes and James (and Z) got knocked around in the paint without enough whistles. Of course, the Cavs lost, so of course I thought they could've used some more whistles. But James and Brevin Knight had a hard collision late in the game with no call. James was down for awhile; I know it was a loose ball and kind of chaotic out there, but that's why there are loose ball fouls.

Fox Sports Net pissed me off. This is the first game I watched on FSN Ohio this year, and I can't say I was impressed. First of all, the camera work was just awful. We missed parts of plays because of 'hero shots' and graphics. Plus, Fred McLeod and Scott Williams are awful. I'm not a fan of either of the Cavs' color commentators (Williams and Austin Carr) but Fred McLeod is equally bad. First of, let me say that I am kinda surprised at all love Michael Reghi has been getting; I thought he was a decent play-by-play man, but I wasn't enamored with the guy. But McLeod sucks. My biggest beef? He's a homer. He's always saying little shit like "I thought May traveled there, but I guess the refs didn't" and "it looked like it went off of Charlotte, but they say it's Bobcat's ball". I know Gilbert is allowed to bring in his own men (he is the owner after all), but firing Reghi for this hack was a mistake.

and finally

Don't sweat this loss. Sure, the Cavs could've played better, but they weren't going to go 82-0. Ya, it sucks that they blew this game after that great win versus the Spurs, but they got to learn that opposing teams will be gunning for 'em this season. They've seemed to have learned how to close out close games, but hey still haven't seemed to mastered playing with a sizeable lead. They need to keep the pressure on for the entire 48 minutes and put the lesser opponents away.


POJO_Risin said...

I agree with your points, although I think we got a quarter out of the Cavs, and not a half. I couldn't stand the jump shooting, in particular when they put Jones in the game, and Marshall facing the basket. Donyell is a better player with his back to the basket moving to the three point line, not facing up from the start. He's also a good rebounder, and it takes away from their glasswork. The offense was horrible, and Lebron was the center of it. Without Hughes scoring well either, it looked like a team that just realized there was a basket, and were trying to figure out HOW to get it up there. I can't believe freakin' Sean May stared him down. I almost thought I dreamed it this morning. I guess I didn't. I didn't want to bitch about the refs, but I do think there were some terrible calls. I almost choked when they called a travel. He DID travel, but I can't remember the last time I saw a traveling call. Oh well, until next time...

Ben said...

Ya, that move where James catches the ball on the wing and then pivots to face the basket... technically that is a travel, but he had made that move 10ish times during the game, and they called the travel on time 11, late in the game with Bobcats having momentum. I'm not saying don't call it a travel, just call it the entire game, not just in the heated moments