Game 58: Raptors at Cavs
Quicken Loans Arena
Radio/TV: WTAM (1100 AM)/Fox Sports Ohio
I don't want to be the naysayer, but the Cavs are five games out of the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 24 to play.
I would have love to cover playoff basketball again. It seems like an eternity since the Cavs were in the postseason (2010). It doesn't appear as if we'll see it this year.
What happens if they don't make the playoffs? Owner Dan Gilbert might blow it up and get rid of the entire bunch - GM, front office and coaching staff.
I don't think that's what will happen, but I honestly don't know.
Raptors coach Dwane Casey has his team playing like many thought the Cavs would play. They are scrappy. They defend. And they are well-coached. Casey is on the last year of his deal. Toronto almost has to re-sign him now.
They are leading the Atlantic Division and are the third seed in the East.
Heck, Casey might get some Coach of the Year votes (well, maybe a few).
The Cavs, meanwhile, flew to Oklahoma City after the game. Most people expect them to get annihilated.
They will be missing their three key players in Anderson Varejao, Dion Waiters and C.J. Miles. They haven't learned how to win without the trio. That's just too much firepower to overcome for the Cavs. Their outside shooting has completely gone in the dumper without Waiters and Miles.
They played hard against the Raptors. They just didn't execute as flawlessly as the Raptors did on Tuesday.
Every time I see Toronto center Jonas Valanciunas, I get a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. When there's a center sitting on the board like there was in the 2011 NBA draft, you pounce on him.
The Cavs passed on Valanciunas and Andre Drummond in back-to-back drafts. How did that work out for them?
UP NEXT: The Cavs travel to Oklahoma City at 8 p.m. Wednesday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
C Tyler Zeller (7-0, 250) vs. Jonas Valanciunas (6-11, 231)