Late in the third quarter, there was a sequence that included back-to-back three pointers from Kevin Love that put the Cavaliers up 74-72. Cleveland had a slow start and allowed for the Pelicans to take a 13 point lead going to halftime. But a little bit of defensive pressure and some key shot-making from Love and LeBron James allowed the Cavaliers to take the lead.
At that point, it seemed inevitable that Cleveland would take control of the game and find their fourth win of the season. Yet, the Pelicans’ big men Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins took over and led New Orleans to a 123-101 victory.
The biggest concerns from this game for Cleveland continues to be surrounding the three-ball. They’re doing an awful job defending the three-point line, allowing the Pelicans to go 13-of-31 from deep.
At the same time, the Cavaliers’ shooters seem to be in slumps, missing open jump shots. J.R. Smith, Channing Frye and Jae Crowder combining to go 2-of-11 from deep won’t lead to much success.
Dwyane Wade probably had himself his best game in wine and gold, dropping 15 points on 7-of-12 shooting and dishing four assists. It seemed like Wade turned back the clock with a huge dunk and behind-the-back layup sequence in the second quarter. Love also seemed to find his stroke in this game, scoring 26 points, hitting 5-of-6 three-pointers as well.
On the flip side, the Cavaliers had no answer for the Pelicans’ frontcourt duo. Davis had 30 points and 14 rebounds, while Cousins had himself a triple-double, tallying 29 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists. Jrue Holiday and E’Twaun Moore added 53 points on 22-of-30 shooting, so it’s safe to say that the Pelicans’ offense was on fire.
Cleveland is going to have to regroup quickly after dropping two games to the Nets and Pelicans on the road. They return home to the Quickens Loans Arena on Sunday night for a matchup against the New York Knicks. Tipoff is at 7 p.m.