LeBron Puts His Cavaliers Teammates on Notice Following Loss

Jose Verdugo
Enero 14, 2018

The Toronto Raptors are averaging 112 points on 47.2 percent shooting and allowing 103.7 points on 44.9 percent shooting.

Without both their starting point guard and backup point guard in the lineup - and were both given the night off to rest - Cleveland built a 22-point lead, had its best defensive quarter of the season by holding in to 12 points in the opening frame and kept the Pacers to 97 points overall (far better than the 127, 127 and 133 the, and hung on them the previous three games).

The Houston Rockets, playing without guard James Harden due to a hamstring injury, had 27 points off the bench from Gerald Green and 21 more from Clint Capela in a 116-98 romp at Orlando. After LeBron converted on a pull-up jumper from mid-range at the 3:57 mark of the fourth quarter, Cleveland didn't score for the remainder of the game. With the 29th ranked defense, if Cleveland is not hitting from beyond the arc things tend to go poorly. He frustrated him enough at one point to provoke a shove from LeBron late in the game. "I've already exceeded everything that I've ever dreamed about so at this point I'm just adding insane toppings on the cake like my daughter would do". The Warriors (34-9) will be making their only regular-season visit to the Air Canada Centre season Saturday and could be missing star guard Stephen Curry, who has a sprained right ankle.

"That's one of the best jobs", said Casey.

"It doesn't bother me at all", Thompson said. It's got to start with us, everybody getting back to what we were doing.

"But at the same time, he can't lose his fire".

"You could win a hundred straight games and face the Warriors and there are still challenges", LeBron James said.

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But in the next breath, Casey seemed to acknowledge that Ibaka needs a little more self-control when it comes to his conduct.

Cavs reserve Channing Frye told ESPN that Lue's remarks should put his team on notice. I thought it was good for us. "Credit to my teammates for a great overall team win". Domantas Sabonis struggled with his shot but still contributed a double-double with 10 points and 14 rebounds. Most of the heavy offensive lifting was provided by the bench, which accounted for 76 of Toronto's 133 total with four players - VanVleet, Powell, Poeltl and Siakam all scoring in double figures.

"I've already went further than I thought I'd go so everything else at this point is extra credit". [The Cleveland game] was a prime example of that.

The Raptors look just as likely as the Celtics to challenge the Cavs' dominance in the East, as they beat them senseless even without Ibaka and Lowry, as DeMar DeRozan continues to prove that even without being the most versatile star in the National Basketball Association, he's one of the league's most unstoppable weapons.

"There's a few games but you could nitpick so much, dwell on it", said DeRozan. "He's continuing to just excel", Miles said.

"Play harder", he said.

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