The Cavaliers haven’t won three straight games since March of last season. The team ended that streak last night with a 99-98 victory over the Raptors. All-Star Kyrie Irving continued to amaze with 32 points and the final dagger with less than a second to go. Cleveland is now just 13-32, but this new-look team has looked the best they have all season.
Cavs’ newcomers Wayne Ellington and Marresse Speights didn’t waste any time in making an impact with the team. The two, along with D-leaguer Josh Selby, came to Cleveland on Friday before the Cavs took on the Milwaukee Bucks. In two games, the two former Grizzlies have combined for 42 points off the bench. Speights had 17 big points in 27 minutes Saturday night. Ellington followed with 12 bench points for the Cavaliers and hit the fourth-quarter three that put Cleveland on top Friday against Milwaukee.
Nine members of the Cavaliers saw the floor Saturday night. They were the five starters (Irving, Waiters, Gee, Thompson and Zeller) along with four bench players. Two of those four subs haven’t been with the team for a week yet. This could be a sign that Speights and Ellington’s roles could be expanded even further than the 51 combined minutes they played in Toronto.
Kyrie Irving notched tenth game with 30+ points on Saturday night. In fact, he’s averaging 35.7 points per game during the win streak. It’s seems like a pretty simple equation for the Cavaliers. Steady contributions from non-starters plus the dominance of a budding superstar equals good results.
If the Cavaliers extend their current winning streak any further, it will be the longest in the Coach Byron Scott era. The franchise last won at least four games in-a-row during the 2009-2010 season; the final year of LeBron James.
The Cavs will get that opportunity on Tuesday night when the host Golden State.