Plenty has happened to the Cleveland Cavaliers of late, both on the court and off. On the court, the Cavs have won two straight games in dominant (and fun!) fashion, looking closer to the team that closed out last year's regular season. LeBron James, who has sparked plenty of controversy in ways that only he can, has been doing everything on the court to make up for what's happened off the court.
For both the Cavs and James, they now get to face teams that should be suitable for both of the two, facing a Brooklyn Nets team that is one of the worst in the league and a team that James normally plays well against. Is this a possible letdown game for the Cavs, or the continuation of their dominant play of late?
Who: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Brooklyn Nets
When: 7:30 p.m.
Where: Barclays Center; Brooklyn, New York
Where to watch: FOX Sports Ohio, NBA League Pass
Enemy Blog: NetsDaily
Music: Ice Cream - Raekwon
What to watch for:
- Since James subsequently forget what the mute button was and began an unfollowing spree that sparked some panic from Cavs fans, his two games have been very good. He put up his 47th career-triple double against the Denver Nuggets on Monday, then almost notched another one in last night's win over the Milwaukee Bucks. Now he gets to face a Nets team that he historically does well against, especially if Jay-Z is in the house.
- Although he struggles against the Nets in his career, this is the perfect game for Kyrie Irving to turn the corner on the final stretch of the season. Irving hasn't played bad, but he hasn't played consistently as well as he did last year. Injuries, of course, play a big factor in that, but he also has had 45 games under his belt to work out the rust he from the games he's missed earlier in the season. Facing a Nets team that is depleted at point guard (Donald Sloan is their current starting point guard!), a big night from Irving should very well be in play.
- For as bad and boring as the Nets have been this year, they do have some players that weirdly are fun to watch. Brook Lopez is quietly having one his best seasons of his career and could be a matchup problem for the Cavs. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has some serious athletic abilities and has the chance to create a poster every time he steps on the court. Sean Kilpatrick simply gets buckets.
- Speaking of Kilpatrick, tonight's matchup that I want to see is him and J.R. Smith going back-and-forth, seeing who can get more buckets per minute played.
- Cavs currently hold a 2.5-game lead over the Toronto Raptors for the top seed in the Eastern Conference. A win tonight would push them to a three-game lead with 10 games to play for Cleveland and 12 for Toronto.
- LeBron milestone watch: three steals away from passing Charles Barkley for 26th on the all-time steals list. Also two rebounds away from passing Erick Dampier for 111th all-time in total rebounds.
Fear the Sword's fearless prediction:
Both the Cavs and the Nets are on SEGABABAs, meaning this one could get a little sloppy. I think the Cavs are less sloppy and get a great game from Irving, resulting in a 107-99 victory for the Cavs to move them one game closer toward clinching home-court advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs