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Game #57 - Cleveland Cavaliers at Orlando Magic Game Day Open Thread

2009/2010 NBA Regular Season
37-19 43-13
February 21, 2010
Amway Arena
1:00 PM et
Radio - WTAM 1100 / ABC
Probable starters:
Jameer Nelson PG Mo Williams
Vince Carter SG Anthony Parker
Matt Barnes SF LeBron James
Rashard Lewis PF J.J. Hickson
Dwight Howard C Shaquille O'Neal

The road for the Cavaliers doesn't get much easier today with an afternoon game in Orlando. The Cavaliers are once again in an adjustment phase, trying to incorporate Mo Williams back into the starting lineup while at the same time trying to make things easier for newcomer Antawn Jamison. Don't underestimate to adjustment period involved in getting used to life without Zydrunas Ilgauskas as well.

The Cavaliers have beaten the Magic twice this year, and both teams are coming off of losses - Orlando lost to Dallas a couple night ago. 10 days ago, the Cavaliers beat the Magic at the Q in a game marred by fouls on both big men - Dwight Howard and Shaquille O'Neal. While obvious fould have to be called, I am hoping the officials let the two big men bang bodies a bit before affecting the game with touch fouls.

When a team wins 13 straight, a 2-game losing streak is immediate cause for concern for some. Not me. I have been concerned for awhile with the lack of defensive intensity and poor shot selection. What has changed is the level of competition - the Cavaliers are now paying for their faults on the scoreboard. Play defense today they way they have been for the past 4 or 5 games, and it will be another loss of the Cavaliers.

3-in the Key

1. The Cavaliers are 17-5 in 2010, tied with the Utah Jazz for the best record in the NBA during that span.

2. The Cavaliers have won 3 of the last 4 regular season games over the Magic and two straight.

3. The Cavaliers have two of the Top 3 players in plus/minus ratio with MVP candidate LeBron James leading the league at +451 and +8.1/gm and one of the league's best defensive players and sixth men in Anderson Varejao ranking third at +381 (+7.1/gm).