Caris LeVert’s reassuring message amid struggles for Cavs since All-Star break

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Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

The formerly red-hot Cleveland Cavaliers have come out of the NBA All-Star break with two straight losses, but Caris LeVert is remaining confident despite his and the team’s very recent struggles.

The Cavs lost at the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday after dropping their first game out of the break at home to the Orlando Magic on Thursday. Leading into the break, Cleveland had won 18 of its past 20 games.

Now, in losing three of its past four contests, two of those defeats have come at the hands of the 76ers, who played both of those games without injured MVP candidate Joel Embiid.

As far as LeVert goes, the 29-year-old reserve shot just 1-for-11 from the floor on Friday, including 0-for-4 from 3-point range. Against the Magic on Thursday, he shot 2-for-10 from the field and missed both of his 3-point attempts.

“I liked my looks tonight, especially in the second half,” LeVert told after Friday’s loss to the 76ers. “I’m happy with how the ball is leaving my hands. Sometimes you go through that. Is what it is. It’s the NBA. Try not to think too much about it. Just continue to do what I do and be who I am. Do the same stuff outside of games and things like that. Just gotta keep going. I’m due for a big game.”

Prior to the All-Star break, he was shooting 42.4 percent from the field overall and 33.6 percent from 3-point range. For the season, he is averaging 14.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game in his 45 appearances.

“Um, not think so much about it,” LeVert said regarding what he can do to turn things around. “Sometimes it’s like that. Long season. Different lineups and things like that. Just try not to put too much on it and get ready for the next game.”

The Cavs were unlikely to keep winning at the rate they had been since the calendar turned to 2024. In addition, their two recent losses were both to Eastern Conference playoff contenders. But it can be argued that going more than a week between games may have slowed their momentum somewhat.

Cleveland is still in second place in the Eastern Conference with a 36-19 record, and the Cavs seem well on their way to securing back-to-back playoff appearances for the first time since 2018.

They do have some road games against lesser opponents coming up, starting on Sunday at the Washington Wizards. In addition to a home game against the Dallas Mavericks, the Cavs also play at the Chicago Bulls and Detroit Pistons before marquee matchups against the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics early next month.

With the NBA trade deadline and All-Star Game now in the past, the drive for the postseason has begun in earnest around the league. The Cavs will be looking to turn things around as quickly as possible, and any help they can get from LeVert in that effort will certainly be beneficial.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NBA for almost three decades. One of his favorite sports memories is the Cavaliers-Nets playoff series from 1993.