The Cleveland Cavaliers might have the NBA's best net efficiency rating over the past 50 days or so, but it hasn't completely paid off in the Eastern Conference standings just yet. A combination of two missed games from Kyrie Irving, one missed game from LeBron James, and eight missed three throws Sunday from James led to two losses heading into tonight's matchup with the Boston Celtics.
The Cavaliers would currently be the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference with homecourt advantage over the Washington Wizards. The team is 1/2 a game behind the Chicago Bulls, and 1 1/2 games behind the Toronto Raptors.
|2||Toronto||38||22||.633||9 ½||21-10||17-12||10-2||26-11||104.5||100.6||+3.9||Won 1||5-5|
|3||Chicago||37||23||.617||10 ½||18-13||19-10||6-4||21-13||101.3||98.5||+2.7||Lost 1||7-3|
|5||Washington||34||26||.567||13 ½||21-10||13-16||6-6||23-16||98.7||98.1||+0.7||Won 1||3-7|
|8||Brooklyn||25||33||.431||21 ½||11-15||14-18||7-5||14-20||96.5||99.4||-2.9||Won 2||5-5|
On the one hand, it doesn't sound that hard to move up less than two games in the standings. On the other, the Cavs have been in about the same place for a couple weeks now and haven't been able to make a move. You could argue the Raptors and Wizards finish with easier schedules than the Cavaliers. If the Cavs can hold serve tonight at home with the Celtics, they travel to Toronto tomorrow night. That qualifies as a big game.
Really, the Cavs just have to stay within 2, 2 and half games of Toronto between now and March 12. The Cavs schedule really opens up at that point. We will see if they can do it.