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During the 2 games in Cleveland the Fans were chanting “Defense-Defense.” The players looked at each other wondering what Defense was.
Defense has been missing all season. While the regular season is one thing, it will be difficult in the playoffs for the Cavs to win with a D that ranked 20th overall. Playoff games are half court affairs that depend on Defense, rebounding and free throws as much as anything. Cavs fans had hoped that the team would “flip a D switch” and become the type of squad they were last year when they ranked 4th in points allowed. That defensive effort helped them win the title last season.
The problem is the team does not have enough defensive players. They signed a rim protector (Andrew Bogit) but he lasted just 53 seconds before he was hurt. James is a solid defender but that is about all the Cavs have. JR Smith is no longer a factor on D and Shumpert is no factor on either end of the floor.
While the D has been a problem, the offense has also been an issue. The team has allowed teams to get back in the game all season long. In the playoffs so far in 2017, the Cavs gave up leads of 10 in game one and 19 in game two against a very average Pacers team. The O issue has been shot selection and cold spells particularly shooting 3 point shots.
The Cavs won both games but struggled in the 4th quarter to hold on. The “Big three” have played way too many minutes. For a first-round game that is not a positive. Those minutes will wear them down in later rounds.
That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.
NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.
Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on https://www.ebooks-library.com/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.
He also edits .
Cavs don’t need a stinking Defense, they have it now! by Bill Smith