Cleveland Cavaliers Team Report – March 22
=== Cleveland Cavaliers Team Report – March 22 ===
(Sports Network) – Brendan Malone will make his debut as Cleveland Cavaliers
head coach this evening, when they host the red hot Detroit Pistons at Gund
Malone, a former Pistons assistant, is taking over for coach Paul Silas, who
was fired on Monday morning. Silas couldn’t survive the Cavs’ horrendous post
All-Star start, which has seen them lose nine of 13 games. Cleveland has
slipped into fifth in the East, just a half contest ahead of sixth place
Currently, Cleveland has dropped three consecutive contests, including a
105-98 defeat to the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre on Sunday. Cavaliers
swingman LeBron James registered a franchise-record 56 points in the losing
James reached the 50-point plateau for the first time in his young career, and
at 20-years old and 80 days became the youngest player in NBA history to turn
the trick. The youngster ended 18-of-36 from the floor and also grabbed 10
rebounds to go along with five assists. He was 6-of-12 on three-pointers and
14-of-15 from the free throw line.
Drew Gooden contributed 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Zydrunas Ilgauskas
added 10 points for struggling Cleveland, which has dropped 13 of its last 21
games overall. The Cavs’ bench scored just one point.
Eric Snow finished scoreless in 40 minutes for Cleveland, which has dropped
nine straight on the road. Snow did dish out six assists in place of Jeff
McInnis, who was benched by Silas in the tilt.
Cleveland shot 43.2 percent from the field, including 7-of-14 (.500) from
three-point range. The Cavs drained 21-of-25 (.840) from the free throw line,
while being outrebounded 43-38.
The Cavaliers have been a very good home team this season, posting a 24-9
record at Gund Arena. Cleveland, which will begin a three-game road trip in
Houston on Thursday, has won three of its last four home games.
These teams have split a pair of meetings this season as the home team has won
both contests. Detroit has won 10 of the last 13 meetings, including four of
its last six trips to Cleveland.
Following tonight’s contest, the Cavs have a day off before beginning a two-
game road trip in Houston on Thursday. Cleveland will finish its week against
Dallas at AmericanAirlines Center on Saturday.