Game 45: Cavs at Celtics
at TD Garden
RADIO/TV: WTAM/Fox Sports Ohio
WHAT HAPPENED: The Celtics have the best record in the Eastern Conference, and second to the surging San Antonio Spurs in the entire league. On paper, this matchup looked like a terrible mismatch.
But the Cavs competed on Tuesday against the best the East has to offer. They might have an 18-game losing streak, but they didn't back down from the mighty Celtics.
With the loss, they set a franchise mark with 22 consecutive losses on the road. Their last win away from The Q was Dec. 9 in New Jersey.
There were some positive aspects of Tuesday's game. Rookie Christian Eyenga paced the Cavs with 15 points. They had seven players in double figures.
Forward/center J.J. Hickson played an inspired game with 12 points, a game-high 17 rebounds, five assists and four blocks.
The Celtics were spurred by the return of center Kendrick Perkins, who was knocked out of the NBA Finals last year with a serious knee injury.
They were a bit thin up front, as they started Turkish "phenom" Semih Erden (who?) at center against the Cavs. It didn't really matter, however, even though the Cavs won the battle of the boards.
Celtics starter Shaquille O'Neal is out with a hip injury.
The Cavs welcomed back swingman Anthony Parker for Tuesday's game. He's missed seven of the previous eight games with a strained lower back. He had three points in 14 minutes.
The Cavs are expected to keep Eyenga in the starting lineup at "3."
SF Christian Eyenga (6-5, 210) vs. Paul Pierce (6-7, 235)
PF Antawn Jamison (6-9, 235) vs. Kevin Garnett (6-11, 253)
C J.J. Hickson (6-9, 242) vs. Semih Erden (7-0, 240)
SG Daniel Gibson (6-2, 200) vs. Ray Allen (6-5, 205)
PG Ramon Sessions (6-3, 185) vs. Rajon Rondo (6-1, 186)
Cavs – C Anderson Varejao, F Leon Powe, G Mo Williams.
Celtics – G Avery Bradley, C Jermaine O'Neal, G Delonte West.
Mike Callahan, John Goble, Scott Twardoski.