GameDay Preview: Cavs at Warriors
The Cleveland Cavaliers (2-2) will continue their six-game road trip tonight as they square off against the Golden State Warriors (2-2) at ORACLE Arena.
The Wine and Gold come into the contest looking to build momentum from their impressive 108-101 victory against the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday while the Warriors are hoping to bounce back from a hard-fought 94-92 loss in Sacramento to the Kings.
The Cavaliers have a pair of starters among the league leaders in scoring and rebounding as Kyrie Irving's 23.8 points per game is good enough for fifth in the NBA while Anderson Varejao's 15.0 rebounds ranks second. Golden State brings a balanced scoring attack as Carl Landry, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson share a team-high 16.5 points per game.
Probable Starters/Injury Report* presented by Cleveland Clinic
Cavaliers: PG - Kyrie Irving, SG - Dion Waiters, SF - Alonzo Gee
PF - Tristan Thompson, C - Samardo Samuels
Warriors: PG - Stephen Curry, SG - Klay Thompson, SF - Harrison Barnes
PF - David Lee, C - Andrew Bogut
*Subject to change
The Cavaliers barely trail the all-time series, 49-50, posting a 32-17 mark in games played at home with the Warriors holding a 31-17 advantage while playing in their own arena.
Wednesday's contest will mark the first of two meetings between the Cavs and Warriors this season. In their only meeting against the Warriors last season, Varejao recorded his 7th double-double of that year (third in a row) with 13 rebounds (four offensive) to go along with 10 points in 31 minutes while Irving scored 18 points on 7-13 (.583) shooting and added a career-high eight rebounds and five assists in 36 minutes.
Key to the Game/Key Matchup
Key to the Game
The Foul Battle
Golden State gets fouled more than any other team in the league at 25.25 times a game. The Cavaliers have to play disciplined defense and limit the number of opportunities for easy points at the charity stripe. The Warriors convert on nearly 75 percent of their free-throws.
On-the-other-end, Golden State also commits a lot of fouls, tied for third in the league at nearly 24 fouls per game. The Cavaliers must hit their free-throws as they come into tonight's game with the league's worst free-throw percentage at 61 percent.
Cavs Frontcourt vs. Warriors Frontcourt
With the young backcourt matchup of Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters versus Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson going blow for blow, the frontcourt battle will be a key factor.
Within the past couple of seasons, the Warriors have added a lot of depth down-low picking up David Lee, Carl Landry and Andrew Bogut through trades while keeping Andris Biedrins. Since naming Mark Jackson as head coach, the once run-and-gun Warriors have made a conscious effort to pound the ball inside.
Tristan Thompson and Varejao have played solid interior defense thus far and are averaging a combined 22.3 rebounds per game, and reserves Samardo Samuels and Jon Leuer will have to provide the same productivity off the bench.
Where to Catch the Action