GameDay Preview: Cavs vs. Celtics

Tyler Zeller
David Liam Kyle/NBAE/GettyImages

Game Summary

The Wine and Gold host the Boston Celtics tonight at Quicken Loans Arena. Tipoff is at 7:30 p.m. ET.

The Cavs have held each of their last four opponents to under .400 shooting at The Q.

Cleveland (32-48) will look to bounce back after falling to the Bucks 119-116 last night in Milwaukee. Dion Waiters led the Wine and Gold with 23 points while Jarrett Jack added 21 points and Tristan Thompson chipped in 18 points.

Boston (24-55) snapped a nine-game losing streak by knocking off the Charlotte Bobcats 106-103 on Friday night in Boston. The Celtics will hope to avoid another losing streak as they enter tonight's contest having lost a franchise-record 14 straight road games.

Probable Starters/Injury Report* presented by Cleveland Clinic

Cleveland ClinicCavaliers: PG - Kyrie Irving, SG - Dion Waiters, SF - Alonzo Gee
PF - Tristan Thompson, C - Spencer Hawes

Celtics: PG - Rajon Rando, SG - Avery Bradley, SF - Jeff Green
PF - Brandon Bass, C - Jared Sullinger

Status Update: (Cavs) - Carrick Felix, (Left patellar Stress Fracture, Out), Anthony Bennett, (Left Patellar Tendon Strain, Out), C.J. Miles, (Left Ankle Sprain, Out), Luol Deng, (Lower Back Strain, TBD)

(Celtics) - Vitor Faverani, (Torn MCL, Left Knee, Out), Gerald Wallace, (Left Knee, Left Ankle Arthroscopies, Out), Kris Humphries, (Strained Right Patella Tendon, Out)

*Subject to change

Head-to-Head Matchup

In the two teams' last matchup on Dec. 28, the Cavaliers rallied back from a 19-point fourth quarter deficit but fell short from tying the game with 12 seconds to go. Kyrie Irving recorded a game-high 32 points on 13-22 (.591) shooting, including 4-6 (.667) from deep, two rebounds, three assists and one steal in 41 minutes.

All-time, the Wine and Gold are 71-119 against Boston (49-46 Home, 22-72 Road).

Key to the Game/Key Matchup

Key to the Game

Bench Production

With a long season coming down to its final games, all teams are experiencing some form of fatigue. In addition, both squads enter tonight's contest on the second game of a back-to-back.

This means that both the Cavs and Celtics will have to rely heavily on their reserves to provide a spark.

The Wine and Gold's second unit has dominated the Celtics bench this season, averaging 49.5 points while holding their opponent to 20.0 points through two matchups.

Key Matchup

Cavs Defense vs. Jeff Green

Celtics small forward Jeff Green seems to be one of those players whom always plays well against the Wine and Gold.

In two matchups this season, Green has led his team in scoring on each occasion averaging 25.0 points.

With Luol Deng's status for tonight's matchup still in question with a lower back strain that caused him to sit out Friday's game in Milwaukee, the Cavaliers will have to rely on Alonzo Gee and possibly Matthew Dellavedova to contain Green.

Over the past few seasons, Gee has been called upon to guard the opposing team's most talented perimeter player and Dellavedova has been used in the same capacity this season.

Although Dellavedova would be giving up significant size to Green, the feisty rookie from Australia can irritate Green much like he did against Kevin Durant earlier this season.

Where to Catch the Action

TV: FOX Sports Ohio, Radio: WTAM 1100, NBA League Pass Audio, XM 220, Sirius 110

For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike and @chones22 on Twitter.

Be sure to check for Joe Gabriele's live in-game blog providing instant analysis and game notes. Plus, get into the discussion as die-hard Cavs fans talk about the game on CavFanatic's GameDay Thread.

Programming Note

Tonight, FOX Sports Ohio is airing the Cavs – Celtics game (7:30 p.m.) and the Blue Jackets – Panthers game (8:30 p.m.). Click Here for programming details.


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On Deck

After tonight's game, the Cavs welcome the Brooklyn Nets into The Q on Wednesday, April 16th for Fan Appreciation Night presented by Discount Drug Mart. Buy Tickets