The Cleveland Cavaliers stamped their first win of 2024 with authority. A 140-101 victory over the Washington Wizards marked their largest margin of victory (39) since the 2021-22 season.
Jarrett Allen continued wreaking havoc on the glass, gobbling 19 rebounds to go with 17 points and 7 assists. This is Allen’s third time grabbing 17+ rebounds over his last five games.
Allen is delivering a reminder of how dominant he can be on both ends of the floor. His two-way presence has kept Cleveland alive during this stretch without Evan Mobley. In all honesty, it might be time for Allen to receive genuine consideration for the 2024 All-Star Game.
Meanwhile, Max Strus snapped out of a shooting slump by uncorking six three-pointers. He finished the game 9-13 from the floor for a team-high 24 points. This is his third game of 6+ three-pointers in a Cavaliers’ uniform.
Strus is shooting just 33.9% from deep this season but maintains the ability to get hot in a hurry. He is an all-around positive contributor even when his shot isn’t falling. But when those shots are dropping, Strus is everything Cleveland needs.
Well, that happened…
Everything went right for Allen in this game. And I mean everything.
On this putback layup, Allen was forced to take his eyes off the prize to ensure a safe landing. But even without looking, Allen was able to guide the ball home.
The Cavs have navigated murky water all season but 2024 could lead them to smooth sailing. They have two more home games against the Wizards and San Antonio Spurs before a mini-vacation to battle the Nets in Paris, France.
A string of winnable games and an extended opportunity to rest could work wonders for this banged-up squad. For now, the Cavs stand at 19-15 on the season.