In the first half against the Phoenix Suns, the Cleveland Cavaliers tried to play with the quicker pace that Tyronn Lue wants to see, but things still weren't clicking for them. They shot 55 percent from the floor in those first 24 minutes, but their defense left much to be desired, and they only led 55-50 at the half.
I don't know what was said at halftime, but things changed dramatically. The Cavs started playing tougher defense, and three minutes into the third quarter, their lead ballooned to 17 points.
From there, the rout was on.
LeBron James had one of his most efficient games as a member of the Cavs, finishing with 21 points on 7-of-8 shooting. He added nine assists, making this his fourth straight game with at least that many.
Kevin Love chimed in with a solid 21 points and 11 boards, and J.R. Smith went 4-of-6 from deep and had 18 points. Kyrie Irving continued to struggle with his shot a little bit, going 4-of-11 from the floor and missing all three of his three-point attempts.
The win moved the Cavs to 18-3 at home, 32-12 overall, and 2-1 under Lue. They'll play in Detroit on Friday night before coming home to host the Spurs in primetime on Saturday.
A late January win like this, at home against a team near the bottom of the standings, is probably meaningless in the grand scheme of things. Probably.
But the Cavs, and especially their new coach, needed this. They ran, they defended, and they got a blowout win. It looked like they were having fun. There won't be any discussion about the players' brands tomorrow.
Let's see where they can take this from here.