The Cleveland Cavaliers won their second game in a row this evening by handing the Memphis Grizzlies just their sixth loss of the season, 105-91. The Cavs raced out to an early lead and never looked back.
Memphis played without Zach Randolph and Tony Allen, but don't take anything away from the Cavs. They came out with a ton of energy, like they wanted to use this game to make a statement, and they played really well at both ends. They shot 61 percent from the floor, and held the Grizzlies to 45 percent shooting.
Surprisingly, it was Dion Waiters and Anderson Varejao who carried the offense for much of the game. Waiters came off of the bench and scored 21 points on 9-16 shooting in 28 minutes. Varejao got a bunch of open looks while the Memphis defense was focussed elsewhere, and he converted most of them. He finished with 18 points on 9-12 shooting.
As for the other guys: LeBron James had 25 points on 9-15 and 11 assists, Kyrie Irving had 17 points on 8-13 and 12 assists, and Kevin Love had a quiet evening with eight points and eight boards.
The Cavs will finish up their homestand on Tuesday night against the Timberwolves.
Here are some other quick thoughts before I go back to watching football:
- The Cavs had 34 assists on 46 made shots. That's the kind of ball movement we haven't really seen for a full game very often this season. It was fun.
- Love attempted zero threes in this game, which is fine by me. If he's open, he should shoot them. If he's not, he shouldn't force them.
- One game after going ballistic with seven threes, Mike Miller attempted only one field goal and finished with zero points.
- Memphis looked tired by the time it was over. They've played a bunch of overtime games recently, and they were missing guys.
- Still, it was a nice win for the Cavs. They took care of business against a shorthanded title contender at home. It was not a gimme by any means, but it was a game that a good team should win.