Kyrie, Cavs K.O. Bobcats
Wrap-Up – Kyrie Irving lives for the fourth quarter, and on Friday night he worked his magic once more – notching 16 of his 33 points in the final period – including the final two in the final second. With the game tied at 104-apiece, the reigning Rookie of the Year drove right and stepped back to splash home the game-winner with one tick remaining to give Byron Scott the 400th win of his career – and the Wine and Gold the 106-104 win over the Bobcats in Charlotte.Cleveland led by as many as 18 on Friday night, but former Cavalier Ramon Sessions led the Bobcats back to tie the game with just under five minutes remaining. Tristan Thompson untied the game with a pair of free throws with under a minute to play, but Gerald Henderson’s hook shot knotted the affair back up. Seconds later, Irving worked his magic.
Thompson doubled-up for the sixth time in his last eight contests with 19 points and 13 boards – going 8-of-10 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the stripe. In his second straight start, C.J. Miles added 18 points on 7-for-14 shooting.
Game Ball – Kyrie Irving – A no-brainer, Kyrie simply put the Cavs on his shoulders in the fourth quarter, staving off a Bobcats comeback and willing the Wine and Gold to the win. The former Blue Devil, who sporadically shushed the crowd after made baskets, went 10-of-21 from the floor – including 3-for-4 from beyond the arc – and was a perfect 10-for-10 from the stripe. But he did more than score – adding six assists, five boards, a game-high four steals and a blocked shot.
By the Numbers – 26 … points per game that Kyrie Irving – who played his college ball in the state of North Carolina – is averaging against the Charlotte Bobcats.
Quotable – Coach Byron Scott, on his young point guard’s confidence down the stretch …
“He has the ultimate confidence in himself and his ability to get to anywhere on the floor he needs to get to. And obviously he has that killer instinct to be able to take the last shot. He doesn’t mind being the goat if he misses. He doesn’t mind it whatsoever. It takes a lot of guts to take those shots.”
Up Next – The Cavaliers welcome James Harden and the high-scoring Rockets to The Q on Saturday night and head to the Windy City for a battle with the Bulls on Monday. The Hawks come back to Cleveland on Wednesday before the Wine and Gold hit the road for a five-game, nine-day roadie out West beginning on Friday night in Denver.