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Find out the scoop on the CAVS from award-winning sports writer Bob Finnan.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Game 3: Kings at Cavs

SACRAMENTO KINGS (2-1) 107, CAVS (1-2) 104
at Quicken Loans Arena
RADIO/TV: WTAM/Fox Sports Ohio

WHAT HAPPENED: The Kings are the only NBA team to open the season with three consecutive road games. That didn't seem to bother them in the second half on Saturday when they toyed with the Cavs, 54-37.

The Kings have some young firepower in guard Tyreke Evans, forward Omri Casspi and center DeMarcus Cousins. It was too much to overcome for the Cavs.

They allowed the Kings to mae 18 of 32 shots in the second half (56.3 percent). In the game, Sacramento shot 51.9 percent from the floor.

Evans showed why he was Rookie of the Year last season. He came alive in the third quarter with 12 of his team-high 21 points. He got to the basket repeatedly against the Cavs defense.

Center Anderson Varejao returned for the Cavs. He stayed in Cleveland to be with his father, who had heart surgery on Friday at the Cleveland Clinic.

Guard Mo Williams was held out of Saturday's game as a precaution. He's still not 100 percent with the groin strain. He missed all but one game of the preseason with the injury. He then missed five days of camp to attend a funeral in Mississippi. He's missed the first three regular-season games.

Coach Byron Scott said he didn't have a setback or re-injure his groin.

Former Cavs Darnell Jackson has found a home in Sacramento. He had 12 points and six rebounds against New Jersey on Friday. Guard Pooh Jeter played on the Cavs summer league team in Las Vegas.

Kings assistant coach Pete Carril, a former coach at Princeton, was a mentor to Cavs coach Byron Scott. He didn't make the trip to Cleveland.

SF Jamario Moon (6-8, 200) vs. Omri Casspi (6-9, 225)
PF J.J. Hickson (6-9, 242) vs. Carl Landry (6-9, 248)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 260) vs. DeMarcus Cousins (6-11, 270)
SG Anthony Parker (6-6, 210) vs. Tyreke Evans (6-6, 220)
PG Ramon Sessions (6-3, 190) vs. Beno Udrih (6-3, 205)
Cavs - G Christian Eyenga, F/C Samardo Samuels, G Mo Williams
Kings - G Pooh Jeter, C Hassan Whiteside
Steve Javie, Mark Ayotte, Leroy Richardson

Friday, October 29, 2010

Game 2: Cavs at Raptors

TORONTO RAPTORS (1-1) 101, CAVS (1-1) 81
at Air Canada Centre
RADIO/TV: WTAM, Fox Sports Ohio

WHAT HAPPENED? The Cavs were a bit short-handed in Friday's game and it caught up with them.

Center Anderson Varejao didn't make the trip to Toronto. His father had heart surgery on Friday at the Cleveland Clinic and things reportedly went well.

Guard Mo Williams was also a late scratch due to his groin problem. He worked hard on the court before the game, but Coach Byron Scott decided to hold him out of Friday's game.

He's 50/50 for tonight against Sacramento. He almost assuredly will play Tuesday against Atlanta.

Ryan Hollins started at center and finished with seven points and five rebounds. Forward J.J. Hickson, whom the Cavs are counting on in a big way, got in immediate foul trouble. Once, he grabbed 7-foot center Andrea Bargnani 20 feet away from the basket.

Hickson ended with just six points and six rebounds.

Only two players reached double figures: Forward Antawn Jamison (13) and Anthony Parker (10). The five starters combined for 29 points. Bargnani had 20 by his lonesome for the Raptors.

Ramon Sessions started at point guard and was about as bad as one can play. He was 1 of 10 from the field. He had more turnovers (5) than points (4). He did have four assists, and they were at a premium on Friday (15 as a team).

Perhaps the lone bright spots were the fact that rookies Manny Harris and Samardo Samuels each scored their first NBA points. Harris had eight points, including two 3-point goals. Samuels had seven points, including an alley-oop dunk.

Like most coaches, Scott might be a bit reluctant to play the undrafted rookies. That might be a mistake, given the current state of this team. Both players might be a big part of the future.

SF Jamario Moon (6-8, 200) vs. Linas Kleiza (6-8, 245)
PF J.J. Hickson (6-9, 242) vs. Reggie Evans (6-8, 245)
C Ryan Hollins (7-0, 240) vs. Andrea Bargnani (7-0, 250)
SG Anthony Parker (6-6, 210) vs. DeMar DeRozan (6-7, 220)
PG Ramon Sessions (6-3, 190) vs. Jarrett Jack (6-3, 200)
Cavs - G Mo Williams (groin), C Anderson Varejao (personal reasons), G Christian Eyenga.
Raptors - F Ed Davis (knee surgery), F Joey Dorsey, C Solomon Alabi.
Ed Malloy, Courtney Kirkland, Eli Roe

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Game 1: Cavs vs. Celtics

CAVS (1-0) 95, CELTICS (1-1) 87
at Quicken Loans Arena
RADIO/TV: WTAM, Fox Sports Ohio
TIME: 7 p.m.

WHAT HAPPENED: A little more than five months after being dumped by the Celtics in the Eastern Conference semifinals, the Cavs' 2010-11 season kicked off on Wednesday.

The Cavs got a little revenge on Wednesday, despite playing without guard Mo Williams.

It didn't hurt that the Celtics were coming off a hard-fought, 88-80 win over Miami on Tuesday. Catching them on the second leg of a back-to-back set was not a bad thing. The Celtics seemed to wear down and were outscored in the fourth quarter, 27-14.

J.J. Hickson started off like gangbusters and finished with a game-high 21 points.

He said afterward this was a game he thought the Cavs should win. He does know the Celtics have been to two of the last three NBA Finals, doesn't he? They also play the Celtics three more times this year, including twice in Boston.

But Hickson was very good tonight and fought hard against Celtics forward Kevin Garnett.

Guard Daniel Gibson was outstanding with 16 points in the second half. He also had eight assists.

SF Jamario Moon (6-8, 200) vs. Paul Pierce (6-7, 235)
PF J.J. Hickson (6-9, 242) vs. Kevin Garnett (6-11, 253)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 260) vs. Shaquille O'Neal (7-1, 325)
SG Anthony Parker (6-6, 210) vs. Ray Allen (6-5, 205)
PG Ramon Sessions (6-3, 190) vs. Rajon Rondo (6-1, 186)
Cavs - G Mo Williams, G Christian Eyenga, F/C Samardo Samuels
Celtics - C Kendrick Perkins, F Luke Harangody, G Avery Bradley
Bob Delaney, Michael Smith, Haywoode Workman

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Heading to C-Bus

I'm getting ready to head down to Columbus for the eighth and final preseason game. The Cavs will "host" Milwaukee at 7 tonight at Value City Arena on the Ohio State University campus.

Forward Antawn Jamison is available for tonight's game. He's been bothered by a sore left knee. He's been banged up for most of the preseason. He might be reaching the stage of his career where that will be the norm.

Veteran Jamario Moon has been named the starter at small forward, but I'm told that's not set in stone. The plan was for Jamison to claim that spot, but he's been slowed by injuries. If the Cavs are going to eventually deal Jamison, he'll need to play and play well.

It's not ideal for the team's highest-paid player at more than $13 million to come off the bench.

But the 34-year-old Jamison has had a preseason to forget. He's heading into the Bucks game shooting 19 percent from the field and averaging 3.8 points. That's ridiculous for a player of his stature.

Jamison is a natural "4," but J.J. Hickson has a stranglehold on that position, and rightfully so.

The Cavs need to get Jamison back on track and eventually move him for maybe a first-round pick and a prospect. He doesn't figure into their long-range plans.

As an aside, the Cavs are less than a week away from the real thing. They host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday in the season opener.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Roster breakdown

The following is a quick rundown on the Cavaliers' 2010-11 roster:

PF J.J. Hickson - Don't be shocked if he's Cavs' leading scorer
SF Antawn Jamison - He's too good to come off bench
C Anderson Varejao - Best defensive big man on squad
SG Ramon Sessions - Slick scoring guard who understands Princeton offense
PG Mo Williams - Groin injury is getting better by the day

PG Boobie Gibson - He's playing better than any time in his career
SG Anthony Parker - Coaches love him because he doesn't make mistakes
SF Joey Graham - He's fighting for playing time with Jawad Williams
C Ryan Hollins - He could be pushing for a starting role
SF Jamario Moon - Energy player who will be hard to keep on bench
PF Leon Powe - Very productive big off bench

SG Christian Eyenga - Very intriguing player; has guaranteed deal
SF Jawad Williams - His contract is not guaranteed
PF Samardo Samuels - Promising youngster, who is a 6-7 center
SG Manny Harris - He could replace Danny Green on the roster

SG Danny Green - Could he be playing himself out of league?
PG Cedric Jackson - He could be headed to D-League
PF Tasmin Mitchell - Former LSU star has been bothered by hamstring problem
C Loren Woods - He is 7-2, which is never a bad thing

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Later, Brian

I just said my goodbyes to my longtime colleague, Brian Windhorst. He's leaving for Miami on Sunday morning.

We've been together on the Cavs' beat for seven years. I met him a few years before that at the airport. I think he was either a sports clerk then for the Beacon Journal, or possibly covering Kent State.

He was just a young guy at the time. I was introduced by Chris Tomasson, a former Cavs beat writer.

I became quite close to Windhorst, despite the age difference. We were both very sarcastic and liked to poke fun at everything on the beat.

Covering the Cavs, you spend so much time with the people around the team. We ended up traveling together, staying at many of the same Marriotts throughout the country.

Good things happen to good people. As you know, he accepted a job with to cover the Miami Heat and the NBA. There are some people in the Cleveland area who don't quite understand that Windhorst almost had to take the position. He is now at the top of his profession.

I wish him well. He's going to be facing a challenging task in South Beach covering that team. Good luck and God speed, Brian.

You know I'm just a phone call away.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I'm in heaven

The media was moved from our cushy courtside seats during the LeBron James era with the Cavaliers.

With James now a thousand miles away in Miami, five members of the media was moved to courtside for the preseason opener against Charlotte. It was great to be back.

It might not last, but it would be wonderful to sit on the court this season. We pick up so much more sitting on the court: Banter between the refs and coaches, players and even the media. You're more in tune with the game.

Where we sit in the second section, the players are just specks running around the court.

It would enhance our coverage of the team if we moved to the floor. I don't know if it will happen, but I'm making an appeal to the team.

I know most fans could care less where the media sits. But it would be the fans who benefitted most from the media sitting close to the floor.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Heat Index announced its new lineup of coverage of LeBron James and the Miami Heat.

The Heat Index will be devoted to daily, season-long coverage of the Heat and their new superstar core of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and James. It kicks off on Monday, Oct. 11. The Heat Index will be housed under the NBA section and will include in-depth editorial coverage (columns and blogs), video, audio, automated modules, social media elements, photo galleries and other multimedia offerings.

Editorial contributors to The Heat Index:

Brian Windhorst – formerly with the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Windhorst is one of the leading authorities on LeBron James. Windhorst has written two books about James and has covered him since middle school. Windhorst has been the Cavs beat writer/blogger for seven years and has won awards from the Pro Basketball Writers Association and the Associated Press. Windhorst will be based in Miami as one of two regular beat writers assigned to the team.

Michael Wallace – Wallace has been the Miami Herald’s Heat beat writer for the previous three seasons and is an experienced sports and news reporter. Wallace, an award-winning writer, will team with Windhorst as regular Heat beat writers covering the team daily throughout the season.

Kevin Arnovitz – in addition to his role as managing editor and contributor to’s TrueHoop Network, Arnovitz will provide digital media content and edit portions of The Heat Index.

Sebastian Martinez-Christensen – Martinez-Christensen will be a regular contributor to The Heat Index. He formerly served as a multi-lingual columnist and contributor for, a reporter for ESPN Deportes (radio and television) and ESPN Deportes La Revista magazine.

Personal note: I'll miss Windhorst on the Cavs beat. I've watched him grow from a kid to one of the top beat writers in the league. He almost had to take the job, even though there was some trepidation taking it on his part. Remember, Northeast Ohio has always been his home.

ESPN will produce much great copy about this phenomenon going on in South Beach. I don't know how much of it I'll read. It's difficult for me to read about James' exploits. It almost gags me. It feels like he should be at Cavs training camp.

What happens after the shine wears off the Heat after this year? ESPN is dropping millions of dollars into endeavor. Will they need two beat writers, and a host of others, to cover this team after this season? We'll see.

Friday, October 1, 2010

First look

Not sure who scheduled the Wine & Gold Scrimmage on a Friday night during high school football. Organizers must not realize the importance of prep football in Northeast Ohio.

They'll likely say that was the only time JAR Arena on the campus of the University of Akron was available. Perhaps.

I want to see a few things in tonight's scrimmage:

-- Is Ramon Sessions as good as I think he can be? He's an effortless scorer, who is not a great shooter, especially from long range.

-- Will J.J. Hickson take that next step toward stardom? This guy has made great strides. He's very active around the basket. He now possesses a mid-range jumper. He needs to make more of an effort on the boards.

-- What will Coach Byron Scott do with Antawn Jamison? It sure sounds like he wants to start. He might be too good not to have in your starting lineup. But can he guard "3s?"

-- Is there enough scoring on this team to get the job done? I'm not so sure.