In the Cavaliers’ last three games — a loss to the Magic, a win against the Bulls and last night’s loss to the Nets — the team has been done in by three-point shooting. And Tyronn Lue isn’t happy about it.
As reported by cleveland.com, Lue is hinting at “changes” if the team doesn’t start defending three-pointers with harder closeouts and more effort.
“Keep showing them, keep preaching it," Lue said. “Keep showing them. And if guys continue not to do it, then we've got to make some changes.”
In all three games, the Cavs have been put in close games against teams that they are far better than on paper. Against the Nets — who came into the game fourth in three-point attempts per game — that was because Brooklyn hit 17 threes even with D’Angelo Russell out with an injury. Many of them were open and hardly contested.
“We come into the game, we told them they're second in the league in attempts and they're getting them up,” Lue said. “We're running around here worrying about getting the Brooklyn pick, they might want our pick.”
The good news is that this is a fixable problem. Effort and focusing on closing out is a doable change, even as early as Saturday when the Cavs face the Pelicans. But if it doesn’t, don’t be surprised if Lue changes something or other sooner rather than later.