Miss ya Wally!
- Apr 1, 2007
- Reaction score
AND THE INJURED
DELONTE WEST (Left low back contusion)
BEN WALLACE (Fractured right fibula - out 4-6 weeks)
ERIC SNOW (Chronic left knee - out indefinitely)
CHRIS DUHON (Back)
EDDY CURRY (Busy eating cheeseburgers)
The Cavaliers are tripling their pleasure behind the arc.
They not only have the best three-point defense in the NBA, they have overtaken the San Antonio Spurs and Orlando Magic as the most accurate three-point shooting team in the league.
The biggest reason for their resurgence from the three-point line is they have three players ranked in the top 40 in three-point percentage. Guard Mo Williams is ninth at 43.8 percent, backcourt mate Delonte West is 25th at 41.4 percent and top reserve Wally Szczerbiak is 40th at 40.4 percent.
It’s quite an accomplishment since the Cavs’ primary three-point shooter from last year, guard Daniel Gibson, has slumped to 36.4 percent from behind the arc. Another player who shoots a high volume of threes, forward LeBron James, has dipped to 33 percent.
They are tied with Boston for first at 39.1 percent as a team from three-point land.
“We have a lot of guys who can put the ball in the basket,” Szczerbiak said. “That was (Cavs general manager Danny Ferry’s) plan to surround LeBron with good three-point shooters, some good overall shooting and pretty much good players all the way around.
“We do have a lot of guys shooting over 40 percent from (three-point range). That’s probably one of the reasons (why we’re leading the league).”
Another player, guard/forward Sasha Pavlovic, would be among the league leaders if he had enough attempts. He’s shooting 46 percent, not to mention center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who is shooting 40.6 percent.
It all adds up to the best unit in the NBA.
“I’ll take that any time,” Cavs coach Mike Brown said. “We have some good shooters on this team. We have guys that know how to pass the ball. We’ve done a nice job of trying to reverse the ball. We’re setting screens to help out our teammates. It’s great to knock down the looks that we’ve gotten at the three-point line.”
CAVALIERS 126, KINGS 123 (OT): Cavs forward LeBron James didn’t get a triple-double. He had to settle for a mere 51 points instead.
He added nine assists and four rebounds. He was 16 of 30 from the field en route to his third 50-point game of the season.
The Cavs (52-13) earned their first Central Division title since the 1975-76 season, and second in franchise history.
They trailed by 14 points after three quarters, 98-84. That was after they allowed the Kings (14-51) rang up 39 points in the third quarter.
James had 22 points in the fourth quarter and overtime periods.
Forward/center Anderson Varejao added 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Cavs, while Wally Szczerbiak had 12 points and six rebounds.
The Cavs have won four in a row and eight of their last nine.
James split two free throws with 23 seconds left, which knotted the score at 116 apiece. Kings guard Kevin Martin, who had a team-high 34 points, missed a shot at the end of regulation.
Cavs coach Mike Brown was ejected with 8:15 left in the second quarter. He earned three technical fouls in the last two games.
Assistant coach John Kuester took over on the hot seat after Brown’s second ejection of the season.
The Kings are now 0-25 against the Eastern Conference this season.
The Cavs have won six in a row over the Kings, and are 22-4 against the Western Conference this season.
• The Cavaliers lead the Central Division race by 18.5 games, and join this year’s Lakers (18-game lead in the Pacific Division) as the only teams to have a lead of at least 17 games in their division this late in the season since the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls.
• The Cavs’ 52 wins gives them the fourth- highest victory total in franchise history. The 1988-89 and 1991-92 teams each won 57 games, while they won 54 games in 1992-93.
Quote To Note: “Our mindset is still the same going on the road. I do think we do have a better team (this year). That has something to do with it. I’m also a better coach than I was. It’s not anything different from last year or the year before. Any time you can get a record, it’s great. It’s a nice honor.”—Cavs coach Mike Brown, on setting the franchise record for road wins with 23.
Rotation: Starters—Point guard Mo Williams, Shooting guard Sasha Pavlovic, Small forward LeBron James, Power forward Anderson Varejao, Center Zydrunas Ilgauskas. Bench—Guard Daniel Gibson, Forward Wally Szczerbiak, Forward Joe Smith.
• F LeBron James is tied with Hornets G Chris Paul with six triple-doubles this season. James became just the 12th player in history to record three triple-doubles in a row (Jason Kidd and Grant Hill are the only active players). The last player to register four consecutive triple-doubles was Bulls guard Michael Jordan, who had seven in a row, in March and April, 1989.
• F LeBron James has scored at least 20 points in 34 consecutive road games.
• In two games against Phoenix this season, G Mo Williams averaged 37 points, 3.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists. He also shot 68.4 percent from behind the arc (13 of 19).
• G Delonte West (bruised back) was held out of the Kings game. G Sasha Pavlovic, who had 16 points against the Suns, started at shooting guard.
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