The Cavaliers are going to have some mixed feelings about this one.
On Monday night against the Magic, the Cavaliers put forth one of their best performances of the season. When they went down by 11 at the half, they didn’t fold like they did against the Hornets — they battled back and took the lead. They rotated and battled on defense, resulting in the Magic scoring just 12 points in the third quarter. And late, when it got close, they had chances to win. The Cavs should feel good about that.
But Cleveland did lose 102-100 on Orlando due an Evan Fournier buzzer beater. With the loss, the Cavs are now an NBA-worst 1-9 on the season.
George Hill led the Cavs with 22 points and six assists. Tristan Thompson added 19 points and 16 rebounds. Collin Sexton had five points and two assists in 17 minutes off the bench.
The game fell apart for Cleveland in the 41.9 seconds, right after J.R. Smith hit a three-pointer to put the Cavs up 100-95. Aaron Gordon scored to make it 100-97. Cleveland was able to get the ball up the court, but with 19.3 seconds to go, Cedi Osman threw an unnecessary pass instead of just holding onto the ball. Jordan Clarkson had to commit a foul after, resulting in two free throws for D.J. Augustin. He made both both, cutting Cleveland’s lead to to one.
After the free throws, the Cavs inbounded the ball — only for it to be stolen from Kyle Korver by Fournier with 13 seconds to go. It appeared that Korver was fouled, but there was no call and the Cavs had to foul Fournier. He spilt his two free throws, tying the game at 100.
Cleveland’s last shot came with 2.2 seconds to go, when Hill drove and was blocked at the rim by Orlando’s Nikola Vucevic. The ball went off Hill and Orlando called a timeout to move the ball up the floor. On the inbounds, Fournier faked out Osman and made a 22-foot jump shot to crush the Cavs.
With the loss, the Cavs are now 1-9 on the season. In the loss, Sam Dekker, starting at power forward for the injured Kevin Love, went down with an ankle injury and did not return.
The Cavs next play on Wednesday at home against the Thunder. Tipoff is at 7 p.m.