4. December 19, 2023: vs. Denver Nuggets
Maybe I'm a masochist, but I want to see the Cavaliers test themselves against the best of the best. And our first crack at the reigning NBA champs will come in December when we host Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets.
Cleveland dropped the season series against the Nuggets 0-2 last year, getting blown out by 13 in the first meeting but making a closer 6-point game in the second.
We're all expecting big improvements from this young Cavaliers squad in the 2023-24 season, and what better opportunity to show off those improvements than by giving the champs a run for their money?
The Cavs have what might be the best defensive frontcourt in the NBA, but that wasn't enough to slow Jokic down last year. He cooked the Cavs for 28 points on 10-of-17 shooting with 10 assists in the first meeting, then 24 points on 8-of-13 with 13 assists the second time. That's just what the perrennial MVP threat will do, though.
That makes this an especially interesting matchup, because it forces the Cavaliers to prove how adaptable they can be. What will we do when things don't go right and our biggest strength isn't enough to lean on? Who else can step up?
This is the kind of matchup that will really ask a lot of questions about our young team, and hopefully the answers are good ones.