The Cavaliers (5-7) will take on the Dallas Mavericks (2-10) on Saturday night for the second leg of their Texas two-step. Tipoff from the American Airlines Center is at 8:30 p.m. (ET).
The Wine & Gold will be eyeing their first win during the current four-game roadie against after falling to the Houston Rockets, 117-113, on Thursday night.
WTAM 1100, 100.7 WMMS, 87.7 FM La Mega
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Despite the loss, Cleveland continued to excel at the offensive end. In fact, over the last four games, the Cavaliers are averaging 120.5 points on .510 shooting from the field, .398 from three-point range and .883 from the foul line. Against the Rockets, Cleveland shot 45-81 (.556) from the field, their sixth time connecting on at least half their field goal attempts this season.
So far this campaign, the club ranks 3rd in the NBA in FG% (.481), 3rd in FT% (.817) and 5th in PPG (110.2).
Jeff Green stood out for the Cavs on Thursday, coming off the bench and tallying the highest scoring quarter for a Cavs player this season after pouring in 20 of his season-high 27 points in the second period. Throughout the young 2017-18 campaign, Green has been the leading scorer off the Cavs’ bench with averages of 11.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 21.7 minutes.
Like Green, JR Smith has shown improvement in November. Over the last two games, Smith is averaging 16.5 points on .522 (12-23) shooting, including .533 (8-15) from deep, in 34.5 minutes.
The Cavs will look for that same offensive prowess while focusing on defense and rebounding when they tipoff Saturday night in Dallas. Of course, the future hall-of-famer Dirk Nowitzki and company will do everything they can to slow down the Wine & Gold.
Through the first 12 games of the Mavericks’ 2017-18 season, they’ve managed only two wins, including a 113-99 win over the Wizards in their last matchup, which ended a six-game slide. Dallas finds themselves at the bottom of the Western Conference, however, they’ve managed decent offensive production, especially from beyond the arc where they have notched nine trifectas in each of their first 12 games, including a 19-trey matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers on October 28th.
Going forward, the Mavs will need to continue to rely on their impressive rebounding efforts.The Mavericks outrebounded the Wizards, 53-39 (including 11-3 on the offensive glass), in their previously mentioned victory at Washington earlier this week. Dallas grabbed 50-plus boards for the second time in its first 12 games of the season.
Even after a rough start, the Mavs have shown flashes of hope from their young roster with Nowitzki as their veteran leader. In their most recent game against Washington, Dallas earned big performances from Harrison Barnes and Dennis Smith Jr. Barnes notched 31 points and nine rebounds in the win while Smith tallied 22 points and eight dimes.
Where to Catch the Action
TV: FOX Sports Ohio, WUAB
Radio: WTAM 1100, 100.7 WMMS, 87.7 La Mega
Programming Note: On Saturday, FOX Sports Ohio is airing the Blue Jackets – Red Wings (7:00 p.m.) and the Cavs – Mavericks game (8:30 p.m.). To view TV listings, CLICK HERE.
For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike and @chones22 on Twitter.
Probable Starters/Status Update*
#4 – Iman Shumpert
#5 – JR Smith
#23 – LeBron James
#99 – Jae Crowder
#0 – Kevin Love
#11 – Yogi Ferrell
#1 – Dennis Smith Jr.
#23 – Wesley Matthews
#40 – Harrison Barnes
#41 – Dirk Nowitzki
Status Update: (Cavs) – Isaiah Thomas, (Right hip, Out), Tristan Thompson, (Left calf strain, Out), Derrick Rose, (Left ankle sprain/soreness, TBD)
Status Update: (Mavericks) – Seth Curry, (Leg, Out)
*Subject to change.
On Saturday, the Cavs will play the Mavericks in the first of two meetings this season. They split the two-game series in 2016-17.
Cleveland is 4-1 in the last five meetings versus the Mavericks, which includes two 30-point victories (128-90 at CLE on 11/25/16 and 127-94 at DAL on 3/10/15). Over those five contests, the Cavs are averaging 112.2 points (including 15.2 second chance points and 18.0 fast break points), 24.2 assists and 14.8 three-point field goals made per game (74-188 3FG, .394).
A cool storyline for Cavs fans to watch for on Saturday concerns JR Smith and Nowitzki. Smith (1,793 3FGM) is three triples away from passing Dirk Nowitzki (1,795 3FGM) for 13th place on the NBA’s all-time three-pointers made list.
The next time these two clubs hit the floor, they’ll tipoff in The Land on April 1, 2018.
Following the Cavs’ Texas tour, the squad will make their way to NYC to battle the Knicks on Monday, November 13th before traveling down the East Coast to take on the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday the 15th. The Wine & Gold return home on Friday, November 17th for a 7:30 p.m. (ET) dual against the Clippers.
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