It wasn't the prettiest of games for the Cavaliers against the Indiana Pacers. The Cavs found themselves in a game that was virtually impossible for them to win. They were playing against a tremendous defensive team, on the road, on the second night of a back-to-back. It wasn't likely that the Cavs won that game. But there were still a few positives to take away from it. Check out what the team had to say.
Head coach Mike Brown
The offense was not efficient at all, but Mike Brown actually thought it was an encouraging performance:
"I thought tonight it would be interesting for me to go back and watch the tape. As crazy as this sounds, I thought tonight was our best offensive night from the stand point that the ball moved and bodies moved. I did not see the ball. There was a stretch in the third quarter where I thought we dribbled and maybe made one pass and shot or dribbled and made one pass and turned the ball over in the third quarter. But other than that stretch in that third quarter for the most part, just watching the game I thought we tried to play with some flow. I thought we tried to move the basketball."
I'd have to go back and look at the film, but this is an interesting take. Some were complaining about how many shots Dion Waiters took and how disjointed the offense looked. But according to the head coach, he thought the process was solid, even if the results weren't there.
The Cavaliers' point guard talked about how devastating the Pacers' defense can be. Irving didn't get to the rim much at all and when he did, he saw his shot contested or blocked. And he rarely got to the foul line.
"They're one of those teams that have mastered the rule of verticality. They have two big forces down there. They contested a lot. That's what makes the Pacers a good ball club."
It's also nice to see that Kyrie is really paying attention to the team's defense.
"We just had a few too many of ‘my bads' or ‘my faults'. That kind of adds up during the course of a game and we can't have that, especially against a good team like the Pacers. We just can't have those defensive breakdowns going into the fourth quarter. We want to be with teams or ahead of them through our defense."
He hasn't been great offensively yet, but that might be because he's putting so much focus on his defense and the team's defense. I'm pretty confident that he'll find a solid balance and end up looking like the all star that we know he is.
Waiters found himself in a situation similar to Kyrie Irving. He just couldn't get anything going towards the rim.
"They have Big Roy (Hibbert) and David West down there. Going in there you have to change your game a little bit. From driving, you have to take those one dribble pull ups and things like that. (On Cavaliers offense) We moved the ball and we had open looks. It just didn't fall, shots that we normally make. There are going to be nights like this that you have to play hard on the defensive end and get stops."
The Pacers were without their starting point guard, George Hill. Watson filled in for him and he talked about how they executed their defensive game plan against the Cavs.
"I wanted to make a difference and fill a void. We did a good job on defense forcing their guards and doubling on Ty (Tyler Zeller). We tried to front Kyrie and slow him down with our transition defense."
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