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

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Game 1: Nets at Cavs

Quicken Loans Arena
Radio/TV: WTAM (1100 AM)/Fox Sports Ohio, NBA TV

WHAT HAPPENED: The Cavs turned Andrew Bynum loose. Well, for about 8 minutes, any way. They Cavs are being very cautious with the 7-footer. They want him to be ready once the playoffs start.

Coach Mike Brown said he could sit him for 3 straight games at times. He wants him fully healthy in the postseason. The Cavs could make a nice run in the playoffs with a big man of that caliber.

I can't want to see him play again. He had just 3 points and 3 rebounds on Wednesday. Hopefully, he can play 15 minutes or so on Friday. We'll have to see how he feels when he gets up tomorrow morning.

The Nets came into the game with gaudy expectations. With the amount of luxury tax they are going to be paying, they better have high expectations. It's not a team that will likely get out of the Eastern Conference, however. I think I have them ranked fourth in the East.

But they are still a dangerous and solid team. Brown said they have six or seven former All-Stars on the roster. I counted six, but they have really bulked up their roster. With Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, they know how to play. Brook Lopez will never be a major force on the boards, but he can score. He's so long. I'd take him in a second.

The Cavs played so hard in this game. I also have a belief in Brown that he's going to get it done. The Cavs blew so many games last year when they had the lead in crunch time, only to cough it up at the end. Those kinds of things might not happen this season, and it's because of Brown. 

There are a couple plays I want to bring up. The first is late in the game and the Nets called time out to set up a play. They cleared out for Joe Johnson, a behemoth at 6-7, 240, who was designed to overpower Dion Waiters. Only problem was, Waiters bellied up to him and Johnson couldn't get around him. Johnson kicked it out to Paul Pierce, who missed a 19-footer.

Also, in the fourth quarter, one of the Cavs got their hand on the ball. Before you know it, players are diving from all angles on the floor. Finally, Kyrie Irving got his hands on it and called timeout. Big turnover for the Cavs.

And then we come to rookie forward Anthony Bennett. He checks into the game, barely gets down the floor, and what does he do? He launches a 3, of course. This kid loves taking 3-pointers. He had like 5 rebounds, so I'm not going to criticize.

UP NEXT: The Cavs travel to Charlotte at 7 p.m. Friday at Time Warner Cable Arena.

SF Earl Clark (6-10, 235) vs. Paul Pierce (6-7, 235)
PF Tristan Thompson (6-9, 236) vs. Kevin Garnett (6-11, 253)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 267) vs. Brook Lopez (7-0, 275)
SG Dion Waiters (6-4, 225) vs. Joe Johnson (6-7, 240)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 193) vs. Deron Williams (6-3, 209)
Cavs - G/F Sergey Karasev, G Carrick Felix
Nets - F Andrei Kirilenko, F Tornike Shengelia
Ron Garretson, Olandis Poole, Zach Zarba


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