Cleveland Cavaliers snap fiery streak
The Cleveland Cavaliers failed to win nine consecutive games after falling late against the LA Clippers, 119-117. With the heartbreaking loss, the young Cavs team fall to 8-2 early in the season to remain second in the Eastern Conference.
Cleveland raced to extend its win streak with a hot start to the final period, but ended up sputtering. Leading by as much as 12 with just 4:37 remaining in the game, they appeared to have let up on the accelerator, committing multiple errors on both ends that allowed the Clippers to hit back with a 19-5 run to close it out.
In what ended up as a game of inches, the Cavs briefly held a double-digit lead in the second period behind Donovan Mitchell and Evan Mobley, who led the Cavs in the high-octane first half of action with 16 points apiece. The duo ended up with 30 and 26 respectively in the loss.
Darius Garland ran the show with eight of his 12 assists in the first half to go with 19 points, but struggled to hit from behind the arc and had a hand in the numerous careless mistakes late. Kevin Love continued to supplement bench scoring as he put up 17 points and eight rebounds, while big man Jarrett Allen added 10 markers with his montrous 20-rebound outing.
The Cavs could benefit from losses like this
Curiously, the other pivotal backup player, Cedi Osman, saw a mere three minutes of court time while starting wing Caris LeVert sort of pulled off a disappearing act offensively against the second LA team in tail end of the back-to-back.
Head coach J.B. Bickerstaff continued to play a tight rotation, and perhaps it was due to certain matchups that Osman was as good as benched while Isaac Okoro was given more minutes towards the endgame.
Despite the disappointment, the Cavs will stand to learn from another close loss as in during their opening night defeat against the Toronto Raptors, with both games feeling a lot like proper postseason bouts–something this young squad has not a ton of experience in just yet.
No rest for the weary, however, as the Cleveland Cavaliers will only have a day off before continuing on the gruelling California road trip with a stop to face the Sacramento Kings on November 9, before going onward to visit the defending champs Golden State Warriors.