Game 21: Cavs at Magic
RADIO/TV: WTAM/Fox Sports Ohio
This team is going nowhere fast this year. Something is missing. Some think there is a black cloud hanging over the Magic caused by the trade demand made by All-Star center Dwight Howard. Is he naive enough to think that's not affecting his team? Apparently.,
He sees all the other players who forced their way out of other teams and he wants some of that for himself. What he's done is ruined this team.
Howard finished with 19 points, 16 rebounds and eight blocks. He swatted at least three shots by Cavs guard Kyrie Irving, who really didn't impact the game. He ended with 18 points, four rebounds and six assists.
It was reserve forward Alonzo Gee who was the star of the night with a career-high 20 points, five rebounds and one block. He made 3 of 4 from behind the 3-point arc.
Center Anderson Varejao was also very good, at least on the boards with 15 rebounds. He added 12 points, three steals and a block.
Forward Antawn Jamison didn't shoot the ball well (6 of 19), but he pulled down a season-high 12 rebounds. The Cavs couldn't "throw it in the ocean." They shot 36.7 percent from the field.
With 3 minutes left in the game, the Cavs decided to Hack-a-Howard. They sent him to the line 16 times. He made nine. It helped them get back in the game, but it wasn't enough.
Coach Byron Scott dusted off backup center Semih Erden to defend Howard. Erden hadn't played in the previous five games. He didn't score, but had four rebounds.
Speaking of hitting the boards, the Cavs pulled down a season-high 57 rebounds, including 18 on the offensive glass.
The Cavs played without three injured players: shooting guard Anthony Parker (strained lower back) and Daniel Gibson (neck infection) and forward/center Tristan Thompson (sprained left ankle). None of them made the trip to Orlando. My guess is that Gibson might attempt to play against Dallas on Saturday.
The Magic were without starting point guard Jameer Nelson and suspended forward Glen "Big Baby" Davis. He reportedly threw a tantrum after the morning shootaround. And to think, he doesn't want people to call him "Baby."
ALL STAR RESERVES: All-Star reserves will be announced Feb. 9 on TNT. The following are the TNT analysts' picks for the Eastern Conference All-Star reserves. Note: Someone dear to Cavs fans' hearts is missing from every ballot. They will actually be selected by the 30 head coaches:
Chris Bosh Miami Heat Forward
Deron Williams New Jersey Nets Guard
Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks Guard
Josh Smith Atlanta Hawks Forward
Andre Iguodala Philadelphia 76ers Forward
Danny Granger Indiana Pacers Forward
Darren Collison Indiana Pacers Guard
Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks Guard Josh Smith Atlanta Hawks Forward Roy Hibbert Indiana Pacers Center Andre Iguodala Philadelphia 76ers Forward Chris Bosh Miami Heat Forward Amar’e Stoudemire New York Knicks Forward Rajon Rondo Boston Celtics Guard Kenny Smith
Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks Guard Josh Smith Atlanta Hawks Forward Roy Hibbert Indiana Pacers Center Chris Bosh Miami Heat Forward Danny Granger Indiana Pacers Forward Carlos Boozer Chicago Bulls Forward Louis Williams Philadelphia 76ers Guard Chris Webber
Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks Guard Josh Smith Atlanta Hawks Forward Roy Hibbert Indiana Pacers Center Chris Bosh Miami Heat Forward Andre Iguodala Philadelphia 76ers Forward Jrue Holiday Philadelphia 76ers Guard Ray Allen Boston Celtics Guard Ernie Johnson
Rajon Rondo Boston Celtics Guard Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks Guard Chris Bosh Miami Heat Forward Luol Deng Chicago Bulls Forward Roy Hibbert Indiana Pacers Center Josh Smith Atlanta Hawks Forward Andre Iguodala Philadelphia 76ers Forward
UP NEXT: The Cavs will host Dallas at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Quicken Loans Arena.
PF Antawn Jamison (6-9, 235) vs. Ryan Anderson (6-10, 240)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 260) vs. Dwight Howard (6-11, 275)
SG Mychel Thompson (6-6, 211) vs. Jason Richardson (6-6, 225)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 191) vs. Chris Duhon (6-1, 190)
Cavs – G Anthony Parker, F Tristan Thompson, G Daniel Gibson
Magic - G Jameer Nelson, F Glen Davis
Tony Brothers, Eli Roe, Haywoode Workman