Kevin Love and Larry Nance returned to the Cavs just in time to lose by 34 to the New Orleans Pelicans in Cleveland’s first game since the break.
The Cavs are back from the All-Star break and started off the second half of the year by getting their teeth kicked in. The Cavaliers were listless three of the four quarters, with an awful performance on both sides of the court. The Pelicans won 116-82 and sent the Cavs to 14-22 on the season. At least the Cavs got good news with the joint return of Kevin Love and Larry Nance.
Love, who had only played twice this season before Friday’s matchup, was held to just 10 minutes in his return, where he went 1-4 from the floor, 1-3 from three, 1-2 from the free-throw line with just four points and one rebound to his credit.
Nance on the other hand played 28 minutes, going 4-8 from the floor, 2-4 from three, 1-2 from the free-throw line for a total of 11 points, plus four rebounds and one assist.
The rest of the Cavaliers failed to show up for whatever reason you can use. Some will say the Cavs looked like a team that had just had nearly two weeks off. You might not be wrong in saying that but the Cavs defensively were useless, and offensively the team only shot 34% from the floor and 22% from three.
Quinn Cook maybe had the best day, making his debut for the Cavs, he went 5-8 from the floor and 3-4 from three for a total of 13 points.
The Pelicans saw their young star players in Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram combine for a total of 51 points against the Cavs. It didn’t matter what lineup Cleveland went with, it didn’t seem to matter as the two forwards pounded away on the team defense all night.
The Cavaliers were down by 21 at the half, after ending the first quarter down by just five. Things only got worse from there. The Cavs were without Darius Garland for the game, but despite what some may think in the media, he’s not the game-changing player people hope he could be just yet. If he had played, the team would’ve gotten beat just as badly.
The Cavaliers’ next game is against the Hawks on Sunday.