I’ll be honest, I only caught bits and parts of the Cavs loss the Spurs (oh, Ohio State…). I saw bits parts of the first three quarters and the bulk of the fourth. It was neither the Cavs’ nor Coach Mike’s best performance; the effort was lacking (until the last couple minutes), the offense was terrible (lot’s of bad, lazy passes and even lazier shots) and they had no answer for Manu Ginobili.
True, the Cavs had won 8 in a row, so it’s not like the sky is falling. But the Spurs played some playoff-esque defense (doubling LeBron early) and the Cavs weren’t quite prepared. Of course, the effort wasn’t quite there either, so take that as you will. It didn’t help that Anderson Varejao left the game with a strained hamstring, the Cavs really missed his energy and hustle. (I can’t wait for the playoffs to start, no one else get hurt).
A couple quick things:
Z’s jumper isn’t there yet. It’ll come around, but there’s gonna be an adjustment period. This is why I like him coming off the bench, I want him to have as little adjustments as possible.
The starting front court was fantastic, the starting back court stunk. LeBron, Jamison and Hickson combined to score 71 points (27, 24, 20 respectively) while the starting backcourt combined for 11. Not good.
J.J. Hickson has to drive Mike Brown insane. Hickson finished with 20 points and 8 boards, 5 of which were offensive. His energy and athleticism is something no other Cavalier big man can bring. Unfortunately, J.J. still gets lost defensively and he bowled over Ginobili for a late game charge.
More playoff rotation thoughts….
Where was Jamario Moon? Everyone on the Cavalier bench got into the game except for Moon. Why? He’s an athletic wing that is a really good defender, decent rebounder and he can spread the floor (a bit, at least). The Cavs have gone away from him in recent weeks (Brown has opted to play Jawad Williams ahead of him) and I don’t care for it. He’s an extremely useful asset.
Right now, I’d say the Cavs nine man playoff rotation is this: Mo, AP, LBJ, Jamison, Shaq, Delonte, Andy, J.J., and Z. I’m not sure what to do with the big men, cause they all deserve minutes. But I don’t see how Jamario Moon won’t be useful. He gives the Cavs another wing who can run, he’s always a threat for the backdoor alleyoop and he can guard big wings (and guard them well, due too his athleticism).
I love the bigs, but I’m not sure you can rotate five guys in what’s essentially two spots (well, maybe you play LeBron at the 2 and ‘Tawn at the 3, but LBJ is getting the bulk of the SF minutes). If you’re playing all five bigs, then that means you’re only playing three guards in Mo, Delonte and Parker. Is that enough? I dunno. I just think Moon can do a lot of things that other players can’t and he was major reason for their Christmas Day victory over the Lakers (of course, so was Mo Williams, but that’s another story). It just doesn’t make sense to me that Moon was the only one to not take off his warmups.
Hopefully, they can bounce back against the Kings on Sunday afternoon.