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

Friday, January 24, 2014

Game 43: Bucks at Cavs

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

WHAT HAPPENED?: The Bucks have the worst record in the NBA. Now we can see why.

This is a dreadful unit. They are 4-19 on the road and 1-10 in their last 10 games.

The Cavs led by 26 points at one point, but emptied the entire bench and let it slip to 15 points. Still, the blowout victory was exactly what the Cavs needed.

They are feeling better about themselves. We'll see if it carries over to the Phoenix game on Sunday. The Suns are coming off a victory over Indiana, so, it's going to be a tough one.

The Cavs finally won a game on this five-game homestand. Are they pointed in the right direction? I'm not sure yet. 

They are capable of playing good basketball. In each of the two home losses to Chicago and Dallas, they played very well in stretches. This team is not as consistent as it needs to be, hasn't been all season.

Cavs lead assistant coach Jim Boylan was the Bucks' interim head coach for the last 50 games of the 2012-13 season and went 22-28. He was on Milwaukee’s staff as the lead assistant to Scott Skiles for four seasons. He, obviously, knew the Bucks' strengths and weaknesses better than anyone on staff and had to be instrumental in formulating the game plan.

He had to have had some role in the Bucks scoring just 78 points, a season low for a Cavs' opponent this season.

The Cavs have won their last three games against the Bucks at The Q. That includes a 114-111 overtime win on Dec. 20 when they were lucky to win.

Cavs forward Anthony Bennett played the last 5:14 of the game. He had two points and three rebounds. If he can't play in games like this, when is he going to play? He was 0 of 4 from the field, including a missed dunk.

They lost to the woeful Bucks in Milwaukee on Nov. 6, 109-104. The Bucks are the only reason why the Cavs haven't dropped into the Central Division cellar where they've been the previous three seasons.

The Bucks' starting lineup might be the tallest in the league. Still, the Cavs destroyed the Bucks on the boards, 52-34, including 21-8 on the offensive glass. The 21 offensive rebounds were a season high. In 12 games in January, the Cavs are averaging 14.3 offensive rebounds. On the season, they are averaging 12.5 offensive rebounds.

UP NEXT: The Cavs host Phoenix at 6 p.m. Sunday at Quicken Loans Arena.

SF Luol Deng (6-9, 220) vs. Ersan Ilyasova (6-10, 235)
PF Tristan Thompson (6-9, 236) vs. John Henson (6-11, 220)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 267) vs. Ekpe Udoh (6-10, 245)
SG C.J. Miles (6-6, 231) vs. Giannis Antetokounmpo (6-9, 210)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 193) vs. Brandon Knight (6-3, 189)
Cavs - G Sergey Karasev, G Carrick Felix
Bucks - G Carlos Delfino, C Zaza Pachulia
Sean Wright, Brent Barnaky, Leroy Richardson


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