Cleveland’s starters played well, but the bench fell apart.
While their starters were on the court, the Cleveland Cavaliers dominated. When they were off the court, not so much.
In a 106-102 loss to the Indiana Pacers on Friday, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ starters outplayed the Pacers and lead by double-digits for long stretches of the game. Lead by a 20 point performance from Dwyane Wade, 17 points from Jae Crowder and 15 points for Derrick Rose, Indiana was no much for Cleveland early.
But over the final 6:37 of the game, Cleveland’s reserves blew a 10 point lead. In short: the Cavs were good with their normal rotation players on the court, and bad with them off.
Wade and Rose particularly stood out from the rest of the Cavs. Wade finished 10-14 from the field and even threw down a nifty reverse dunk. As for Rose, he pushed the pace while leading the Cavs’ offense and was nearly perfect aside from a few missed shots at the rim. He was the lone Cavs starter to not play in the second half. Per cleveland.com, he was dealing with elbow soreness.
The Cavs next play on Sunday on the road against the Washington Wizards. It is unclear if LeBron James, who has yet to play in the preseason due to ankle injury, will be available.