GameDay Preview: Cavs at 76ers
The Cleveland Cavaliers (2-7) head back out onto the road tonight to take on the Philadelphia 76ers (5-4) at Wells Fargo Center, tip off at 6:00 p.m.
The Wine and Gold, in the midst of a back-to-back, look to end a five-game losing streak after falling to the Dallas Mavericks 103-95 last night at Quicken Loans Area. The Sixers are looking to notch their second straight victory following their 99-93 victory against the Utah Jazz this past Friday.
Head Coach Byron Scott and the Cavaliers square off against his mentor, Doug Collins, and the defense-minded Sixers. Coming into tonight's game, Philadelphia is allowing a mere 91.3 points per game, the third-fewest point total in the NBA.
Probable Starters/Injury Report* presented by Cleveland Clinic
Cavaliers: PG - Kyrie Irving, SG - Dion Waiters, SF - Alonzo Gee
PF - Tristan Thompson, C - Anderson Varejao
76ers: PG - Jrue Holiday, SG - Jason Richardson, SF - Evan Turner
PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Kwame Brown
*Subject to change
The Cavaliers trail the all-time series against the Sixers, 97-87, posting a 50-41 mark in games played at home with the Sixers holding a 56-35 advantage while playing in their own arena.
Philadelphia currently holds a five-game winning streak against the Wine and Gold; however, prior to that, the Cavaliers had won 14 of the previous 17 games against the Sixers. The two teams met this preseason on October 17th with the Sixers defeating the Cavs 113-99 despite 23 points from Kyrie Irving and 10 points and 10 rebounds for Tristan Thompson.
Key to the Game/Key Matchup
Key to the GameDefense, Defense, Defense
The Wine and Gold are allowing 104.6 points per game and have given up over 100 points in eight straight after a season-opening 94-84 win over Washington.
Philadelphia isn't exactly an offensive juggernaut. They come into tonight's contest shooting 40.8 percent from the floor, third-worst in the NBA. As a result, the Sixers score the second-fewest points per game at a shade under 90.
Needless to say, tonight's game will be a good opportunity for the Cavaliers to clamp down at the defensive end.
Cavs Backcourt vs. Sixers Backcourt
Despite Philadelphia's scoring woes, their backcourt combo of Jrue Holiday and Jason Richardson have gotten off to great starts this season. Holiday is averaging career-highs in points (19.1) and assists (8.6) while Richardson has scored 20+ points in two of their past three games.
The Cavaliers counter with the league's fourth-highest scorer, Kyrie Irving (24.4 ppg), and third-highest scoring rookie, Dion Waiters (14.7 ppg).
Holiday scored a game-high 24 points while Irving was held to nine in the Sixers' 103-87 victory last season on April 18th. Look for Irving to want to come out and redeem that performance.
Where to Catch the Action