Game 6: Cavs at Suns
U.S. Airways Center
Radio/TV: WTAM (1100 AM)/Fox Sports Ohio
WHAT HAPPENED: The Cavs coughed up a major hairball in this one. They opened a 26-point lead in the first half and tried to hang on. It didn't happen.
This loss stung worse than the Chicago defeat last week at home. In that contest, they were just blown out of the gym. This was worse because they had the win wrapped up, but failed to execute down the stretch. They committed 21 turnovers, seven by Kyrie Irving.
Irving had 17 points, four rebounds and eight assists. But he didn't look right. He's been suffering the last few days after getting food poisoning in San Francisco. He played 37 minutes, but didn't have his normal mojo.
Rookie guard Dion Waiters, though, did have something special. He wasn't expected to play after suffering a quad sprain. He was outstanding, however, with a team-high 23 points. He made 9 of 13 from the field, 3 of 5 from behind the arc.
The Cavs might have something special there. He's definitely growing on me. Waiters had just one turnover in 31 minutes.
All five starters scored in double figures. In addition, Boobie Gibson fired in 19 points off the bench. He made 7 of 9 attempts from the field, 5 of 7 from the arc. He was so hot, Coach Byron Scott should have considered him taking the last shot.
Irving, of course, was totally spent by then. His 3-pointer at the buzzer was off the mark.
How the Cavs let Suns guard Sebastian Telfair run off at least 5 seconds off the clock before he was fouled is beyond me. He split two free throws, giving the Suns a 2-point lead.
The Suns have now won four of their last five games against the Cavs.
As good as Gibson was off the bench, the rest of the reserves were bad - really bad. Samardo Samuels had seven points. C.J. Miles was held scoreless in 12 minutes. He missed all seven of his shots, although he pulled down five rebounds. Like Irving, he also had food poisoning. His play continues to amaze me. I really thought he'd be a major contributor to this team. So far, he's been atrocious.
The Cavs are now 1-3 on this six-game, 11-day road trip.
I have to tell you, I was impressed with former Cavs draft pick Shannon Brown, who scored 22 off the bench. He was 8 of 13 from the field and has become a go-to player for the Suns. He was always a tough kid. But he flopped miserably with the Cavs.
Many think he wasn't used correctly in Cleveland. Because of his size - they list him at 6-4, but he's about 6-1 - the Cavs thought he had to play point guard. In reality, he's anything but a point guard. He's a scorer, plain and simple, and a very good one at that.
UP NEXT: The Cavs travel to Oklahoma City to face the Thunder at 7 p.m. Sunday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
SF Alonzo Gee (6-6, 219) vs. Michael Beasley (6-10, 235)
PF Tristan Thompson (6-9, 235) vs. Luis Scola (6-9, 245)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 260) vs. Marcin Gortat 6-11, 240)
SG Dion Waiters (6-4, 221) vs. Jared Dudley (6-7, 225)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 191) vs. Goran Dragic (6-3, 205)
Cavs – F Luke Harangody, C Tyler Zeller
Suns - F Channing Frye, C Jermaine O'Neal
James Capers, Matt Boland, Michael Smith