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

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Game 68: Cavs at Magic

Amway Center
Radio: WTAM-AM 1100, WMMS-FM 100.7, La Mega-FM 97.7
TV: Fox Sports Ohio, NBA TV

1. There are only 14 games remaining in the regular season. Bring on the playoffs. I believe it's going to be a magic ride in the postseason. I think the season will end in the NBA Finals. I think they are the team to beat, especially in the Eastern Conference.

2. Point guard Kyrie Irving, who had a game-high 33 points on Sunday, now has 90 points in his last two games. Irving is the only NBA point guard with averages of at least 20 points, 5.0 assists and less than 2.5 turnovers per game in 2014-15. The only other NBA player with those numbers this season is Clippers power forward Blake Griffin. Irving is averaging a career-low 2.4 turnovers. He's also the highest scoring point guard in the Eastern Conference and ranks third among all NBA point guards at 22.1 points per game (ninth in NBA). He has scored at least 20 points on 38 occasions, including 10 30-point outings and two 50-point nights.

3. The Cavs played tonight without power forward Kevin Love, who was rested. Tristan Thompson started at power forward and had one of his worst games (four points, three rebounds, two blocks). Love needed a break. Some say his back has been bothering him. He's expected to come back for Miami tomorrow. They'll need his ability to spread the floor against the Heat.

4. Forward LeBron James flirted with a triple-double, but fell just short. He ended with 21 points, eight rebounds and 13 assists. He looked like he came close to hyperextending his right knee after a fall under the basket. It could have ended his season. He stayed in the game, so apparently, it's OK.

5. Veteran Shawn Marion was available for tonight's game. He'd missed the previous 10 games with a strained left hip. Coach David Blatt is going to have trouble playing him and James Jones. Marion might be a bit stronger defensively, but the former will never shoot like "Champ." Jones made 4 of 8 from behind the arc against Orlando for 12 points.

6. The Cavs have won their last 10 games against the Magic, their longest streak against an NBA team. They've also won their last five outings at Amway Center. Orlando hasn't beaten the Cavs since Nov. 23, 2012.

7. The Cavs are 3-0 on their current road trip. They are 24-5 in their last 29 games since Jan. 15. They've also won four in a row. They want to keep that torrid streak alive.

8. Magic scout Anthony Parker played three seasons for the Cavs. He also played for Blatt's Maccabi Tel Aviv team in Israel. 

UP NEXT: at Miami, AmericanAirlines Arena, 8 p.m. Monday

SF LeBron James (6-8, 250) vs. Tobias Harris (6-9, 235)
PF Tristan Thompson (6-10, 238) vs. Dewayne Dedmon (7-0, 245)
C Timofey Mozgov (7-1, 250) vs. Nikola Vucevic (7-0, 260)
SG J.R. Smith (6-6, 220) vs. Victor Oladipo (6-4, 210)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 193) vs. Elfrid Payton (6-4, 185)
Cavs - C Anderson Varejao, F Kevin Love
Magic - G/F Evan Fournier, F Devyn Marble
Ed Malloy, Lauren Holtkamp, Mark Lindsay


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