Just the Box: Orlando 104, Cleveland 90

I was worried about this game when that trade went through. I was worried the Magic would have an opportunity to exploit our perimeter defense. I was right.

 Magic 104, Cleveland 90

Lebron’s line: 30 points (team high), 9 rebounds (team high), 6 assists (team high). There is no way that nine rebounds and six assists should be the team high. With a scorer like LeBron James, our guards should be able to get somewhere in the neighborhood of 15 assists between them, whoever is playing. Last night, Sasha Pavlovic, Damon Jones, and Delonte West combined for a total of seven assists. That’s just pathetic.

— Cavs actually out-rebounded the Magic, 44-40. Not bad, but when you consider that the Magic were…

— 14-32 from three point range, it doesn’t really matter. Anytime your opponent can get over 40% shooting from deep with double digit makes, you won’t win too many of those games. We knew giving up Larry Hughes would really take a bite out of our perimeter defense, and when you have guys that can shoot like Hedo Turkoglu, Rashard Lewis, and to a lesser extent Keith Bogans, they will test you. They passed the test.

Then there’s Dwight Howard. He’s an absolute man child. Guy goes for 23 points and 13 rebounds, and I’m sure Stan Van Gundy will tear into him because he only had two blocks. The Magic have been overlooked all season, partly because Howard doesn’t care if people don’t pay attention to him. Here’s the thing: he’s a top five player in the game, and is the best in the paint. The Magic have just three fewer wins than the Pistons, and have already locked up a playoff spot. I would not want to mess with them in the playoffs, hell I’d rather play Detroit, at least the Cavs know they can beat them in a seven game set.

— Why is Wally Szczerbiak only playing six minutes a night? That’s unacceptable, and just another testament that Mike Brown has no idea what hes doing. This was supposed to be a guy that can come out and shoot from anywhere in the building, but Mike Brown plays him for six minutes. There’s just an endless strain of things to complain about when the Cavs lose.

— Bottom line: when the Cavs made The Trade, all of the experts immediately started talking about if this trade means they can compete with Boston and Detroit, completely overlooking Orlando who has been there all along. Last night proves that either these new guys still haven’t gelled, or that the trade wasn’t worth making. Either way, Cavs cannot play enough games before the playoffs arrive.


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