- LeBron James identifies himself with Michael Jordan after video of Cavs member trashing him emerges
- Report: It’s ‘a matter of time’ until Andre Drummond secures a buyout and joins the Brooklyn Nets
- Tristan Thompson hopes Cavs retire his jersey, makes perfect analogy to ‘tough, gritty MFs’ of Cleveland
- LeBron James offers heavy praise for Cavs rebuild, admits he pays ‘close attention’ to team
- Dylan Windler throws subtle shade at refs for not getting foul call after slam on Kyle Kuzma
- Video: LeBron James has heartwarming reunion with Cedi Osman prior to Cavs game vs. Lakers
- LeBron James reveals Cavs fan that mocked him, which led to 21-point explosion in 4th quarter
- Collin Sexton opens up on why Cavs needed blowout loss versus Celtics
- Report: Brooklyn Nets are hoping Andre Drummond gets bought out by Cleveland Cavaliers
- Report: LeBron James gave Cavs teammates ‘300’ style Spartan shields before facing Warriors in 2016 Finals
Five Problems the Cleveland Cavaliers Need to Address Before Playoffs Begin
- Updated: March 26, 2016
With seemingly every loss this season, somebody somewhere has suggested that it’s time for the Cleveland Cavaliers to push the panic button.
Thursday night’s fourth-quarter collapse at Brooklyn against a team already with more than 50 defeats can’t simply be shrugged off as one of those things that happens toward the end of an 82-game grind. But as humiliating as the outcome was, the Cavs still went into the weekend with the top record in the Eastern Conference and the third-best mark overall.
That doesn’t mean there aren’t problems which ought to be addressed before the playoffs commence next month. Some have been allowed to fester for most or all of the season. Some are more recent developments. And one has become sort of the elephant in the room which you’re damned if you do discuss and damned if you don’t.
1. Restraint on the Threes, Please
Yes, there was the 10-for-38 abomination against the Nets, as well as a 10-for-42 outing in a loss at Utah which prevented the Cavs from going 4-0 on a road trip earlier this month. But their record this season is 4-1 when attempting at least 40 three-pointers in a game, 12-3 when taking 34 or more, and 20-3 when making at least 12.
That being said, look at the list of teams which they have beaten while shooting 30 percent or worse from long range: Sacramento, Milwaukee, Brooklyn, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, New York (three times), Miami, Houston and Denver. Except for the Miami Heat, none of them are a certainty to be around when the regular season concludes.
What was most inexcusable about their losses to the Brooklyn Nets and Utah Jazz is that while the Cavs were taking 80 three-point attempts, they shot a combined 15 free throws. You don’t want to take away what makes Kevin Love, J.R. Smith, Matthew Dellavedova and Channing Frye valuable, but with both James and Irving continuing to struggle from that distance, trying to impersonate the Golden State Warriors might not always be a wise course of action.
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