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

Friday, February 7, 2014

Game 50: Cavs at Wizards

Verizon Center
Radio/TV: WTAM (1100 AM)/Fox Sports Ohio

WHAT HAPPENED?: Cavs majority owner Dan Gilbert, who fired General Manager Chris Grant on Thursday, said he believes in the players and that they have the wherewithal to get the job done. Perhaps they responded to those positive statements tonight.

This was the first game of the David Griffin era as acting general manager. Hopefully, it will have some bearing on what the Cavs do on the court. 

They snapped their six-game losing streak on Friday with a spirited win over what will be a playoff team in the Eastern Conference.

Many thought the Cavs would do what the Wizards have done this season. They came into Friday's game a .500 club: 12-12 at home and 12-12 on the road.

They obviously have talent, especially offensively. All five starters average in double figures, led by All-Star point guard John Wall. He had a monster game on Friday with 32 points, five rebounds, 10 assists, two steals and a block. Wow.

That man can play.

Their backcourt is their strength with Wall and shooting guard Bradley Beal.

Cavs point guard Kyrie Irving missed shootaround when he was a little under the weather. He ended up playing 33 minutes against the Wizards. He had 23 points and a game-high 12 assists. He was very good, especially at the foul line where he was 13 of 13.

Dion Waiters came off the bench for a team-high 24 points and four rebounds. He kept them in the game for a stretch.

C.J. Miles started at small forward in place of Luol Deng, who was also sick. Deng hasn't been very good as of late, especially in the Lakers' loss when he made 1 of 10 from the field. 

Speaking of not being very good, veteran guard Jarrett Jack did absolutely nothing in 12 minutes. Wait a minute. He missed two free throws in the waning seconds that could have cost the Cavs the win.

It's time to put Miles back in the starting lineup.

The Cavs have won their last four games in Washington. They are now 6-20 on the road this season. 

Three other players deserve a shout-out. Center Tyler Zeller, who played a total of nine minutes in the previous two games, was very active off the bench. He finished with eight points and five rebounds. 

Also, little-used Alonzo Gee was pushed into action with Deng out of the lineup. Gee had 11 points and seven rebounds. He also had one of the sweetest follow dunks of the season.

Rookie forward Anthony Bennett, playing his best basketball of his short NBA career, had eight points and six rebounds.

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

SF C.J. Miles (6-6, 231) vs. Trevor Ariza (6-8, 220)
PF Tristan Thompson (6-9, 236) vs. Nene (6-11, 250)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 267) vs. Marcin Gortat (6-11, 240)
SG Jarrett Jack (6-3, 200) vs. Bradley Beal (6-5, 207)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 193) vs. John Wall (6-4, 207)
Cavs - G/F Sergey Karasev, G Carrick Felix
Wizards - F Al Harrington, G/F Glen Rice
Monty McCutchen, Eric Dalen, Kevin Scott


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