Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers rebound with a statement win
The Cleveland Cavaliers bounced back from a disappointing loss a few nights ago by dealing Luka Donic and the Dallas Mavericks a 105-90 blowout. With an uncommon yet heartening win away from home, the Cavs move up to just 6-9 on the road but 18-11 overall.
Three-time NBA All-Star star Donovan Mitchell led all scorers with 34 points off 6-for-9 shooting from deep, while defensive specialist and ‘Junkyard Dawg’ Lamar Stevens stepped up to tally a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Cavaliers.
The Tower City duo of Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley were just as vital, each adding 14 markers while keeping a lid on the basket on the defensive end. On the other hand, Mavs superstar Luka Doncic still finished with 30 points and six assists but was clearly bothered by the Cavaliers’ pesky defense.
Even though they led all throughout the game, the Cavs were not without any trouble. Despite erecting a 23-point at one point in the second period, they saw Dallas creep back to cut the difference to single digits in the second half.
Not allowing another one to slip away, the Cavaliers never relented, flooring the pedal late and raced to another 17-point advantage to put the final nails in the coffin of the home team.
The Cavs buckle down for a lengthy but welcomed homestand
This road win is important for Cleveland, who continues to struggle away from home. In stark contrast to their dominant 12-2 record in the confines of the routinely sellout Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.
If the Cavs are dead-set on building a winning culture and seriously contending for the postseason, they need to be able to rectify that problem. Sure, consistently protecting the home court is the first step to success, but looking like a different team on the road is not the mark of a legitimate playoff contender.
While Donovan Mitchell has largely been steady throughout, his All-Star teammate and fellow team leader Darius Garland has continued to struggle away from Cleveland. It is paramount that all four members of the team’s core play at a high level to sustain a long and successful season.
While still in solo third at 17-10, the Cavaliers have the Brooklyn Nets, the Philadelphia 76ers, and a slew of other teams closing in on the rearview in a sweltering Eastern Conference with more than a third of the season through.
The Cleveland Cavaliers will look to widen the gap as they make a happy return to Northeast Ohio and begin a much-appreciated six-game homestand through the holiday season, starting with a visit by the Indiana Pacers on December 16.