The suppose to be payback game went the wrong way for the Cavaliers. The Nets handed the Cavaliers their 7th loss in eight game, 105-97.
This time it wasn’t the offense that cost the Cavaliers the game, it was the lack of defense. Mike Brown is very concerned with the lack of defensive efforts:
‘We have not defended all year,” said Cavs coach Mike Brown, ”I’m not happy with the way we’re playing right now.”
”We didn’t do a good job anywhere,” Brown said. ”We have to figure out if we are going to defend this year or we’re not.”
”They did a great job of executing,” said LeBron James, who had 29 points. ”They took advantage of some of the weaknesses we had defensively.”
Daniel Gibson returned to the starting lineup after having a wisdom tooth pulled on Monday. He almost had another tooth extraction with 6:20 to play when he did a header for a loose ball at half-court.
The Nets shot nearly 49 percent from the floor, out-rebounded the the Cavs by 15 boards and made 16 more trips to the free throw line.
Larry Hughes played 33 minutes and went 4-15 from the field and score only 9 points. Lebron scored 29 points and Ilgauskas added 21 points.
Reaction from local media:
Defense missing again for Cavs by Brian Windhorst
The Cavaliers have all of their offensive weapons back, but their defense remains on hiatus.
Offense falters as Carter lifts Nets by Branson Wright
LeBron James promised a difference in Friday night’s second meeting of the season between the Cavaliers and the New Jersey Nets.
Reaction from New Jersey media:
The kids are alright as skid ends (The Star-Ledger)
The Nets snapped their four-game losing streak by getting superb performances from eight strong, and as a fringe benefit they might have stumbled upon their new power rotation.
Carter comes through (North Jersey)
Vince Carter came through on his promise to do more and the Nets may have found a lineup with which they can do more.