Category Archives: Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Cavs down Spurs 90-88

The Cavs may have gained some confidence by winning in San Antonio.

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The Cavs beat San Antonio at their own game Thursday night. They shot better from the perimeter, created turnovers, didn’t allow easy baskets, and played physical basketball. In keeping with Cavalier basketball, they out-rebounded the Spurs, built a decent lead, then nearly blew it.

LeBron was merely ‘average’ on Thursday, actually slightly below his average. He finished with 27 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists. He also had 2 great blocked shots, and a 3rd that was called goal tending. It probably was, but it was another great hustle play as LeBron swatted a lay-up from behind. That is becoming LeBron’s signature defensive move.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas was a force, scoring 17 on only 11 shots. He took over for the Cavs offensively when LeBron went to the bench in the 2nd. That group of Z, Daniel Gibson, Devin Brown, Andy Varejao and Damon Jones actually turned a 7 point deficit into an 8 point lead. They did it with great defense and team offense. Devin Brown had an outstanding behind the back pass to Damon Jones on a 2 on 1 fast break. That was set up by a steal from Andy Varejao. It was as if the Cavs knew they had to do more with LeBron on the bench, only this time instead of jacking up jump shots, they played as a team. They made the extra pass and fed Z on the low post. It was the best effort I’ve seen from the bench this year. Continue reading

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Filed under Anderson Varejao, basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Damon Jones, Daniel Gibson, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, San Antonio Spurs, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

See LeBron Score

Memphis forward Mike Miller was not even a speed bump for LeBron James.

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Last night the FedEx Forum reminded me of the James A. Rhodes Arena in Akron. Just like in high school, LeBron James was driving to the basket at will, defenses helpless to stop him. It was a good thing too, because the Grizzles were shooting the lights out of the place.

First the numbers, the Cavs won 132-124 in OT. His highness scored 51 points, (a season high and the 4th 50+ point game in his career) had 9 assists and 8 boards. Once again LeBron came up huge down the stretch, scoring 25 in the 4th and OT. He finished 18 for 28 including 6 of 12 from triple territory. His help came from Gibson who had 18, Varejao (11), Gooden (12), and Z (14). Continue reading

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Filed under Anderson Varejao, basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Drew Gooden, LeBron James, NBA, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Cavs Run Past Sonics

For maybe the first time this season, the Cavs dominated an opponent from start to finish.

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The Cavs turned up the defensive intensity and the result was an easy win against Seattle 95-79. The Cavs outscored the Sonics in each of the first 3 quarters and built a 20 point lead in the early part of the 4th quarter. This allowed LeBron and the starting group to get a little more rest than usual, as they have to play in Atlanta tonight.

Daniel Gibson shot the lights out, connecting on 5 of 8 three pointers, and all the Cavs seemed to get in on the defensive lock down. Larry Hughes made a nice steal leading to a thunderous LeBron dunk late in the third quarter. Andy was his usual hustling self, and even made a few baskets just outside the paint (if I hadn’t seen it myself I might not believe it.) Z never really got going, but with the pace was quicker with the steals and defensive pressure. The Cavs finished with 15 steals. Now honestly, the Sonics are to blame for a good portion of those. They did not handle the ball well. (There’s an understatement.)

Kevin Durant started slow, but showed promise, scoring 24 before leaving the game with a ankle sprain. He came down on Sasha’s foot I believe and that ended his night. He didn’t do anything extraordinary to impress me during the game, just played solid and knocked down some shots. Continue reading

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Filed under Anderson Varejao, basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Cavs top Hawks, LeBron goes off

LeBron busts through the line of scrimmage…Touchdown! Well, what do you see in this picture?

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Someone might want to remind the Hawks what sport they play. I can’t say that I blame them however. At about the 9 minute mark in the 3rd quarter LeBron decided he’d had enough and the wasn’t going to lose this game. And he didn’t. To that point LeBron had only 5 points in the game, he would add 31 more, including 19 of the Cavs last 22 points. Said Daniel Gibson, “He got into one of those zones we all love, It was fun to watch.” Yeah, I’d buy that. Sort of reminded me of another such stretch, back in the playoffs against Detroit.

The Cavs as a team shot much better against Atlanta, including 6 of 10 from Larry Hughes. Zydrunas had a rough night, grabbing 5 boards and scoring only 3 points. His shot just wasn’t there, and they defended the pick-and-pop well, which is Z’s bread and butter. Drew Gooden had himself a good ballgame, and Varejao added 11 boards and 8 points from the bench. I was impressed with the balance of playing time the three big men got last night, and since Drew had the hot hand of the three, he was rewarded with more minutes. What a concept! Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Damon Jones, Daniel Gibson, Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, Mike Brown, NBA, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

LeBron gets win, Kobe gets accolades

I’m sure you read the ESPN articles leading up to last night’s game comparing Kobe with LeBron. Last night when the chalk cleared, LeBron was standing on top.

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The Cavs, lead by LeBron James, rebounded from a terrible game against the Knicks on Wednesday with a gritty effort against the Lakers. It was a excellent defensive fourth quarter effort that earned the Cavs a 94-90 win. The Lakers scored a mere 12 points in the final period, and Bryant had only 2 of those. In contrast, LeBron scored 6 of his 33 points in the 4th, and grabbed 3 boards in the final frame.

If you ask LeBron who the best player in the league is, there is little question what his response would be-

Kobe Bryant is definitely the most explosive player we have in this league,” James said. “There’s no one like him.”

High praise, but if it’s all the same to you LeBron, we’ll take you in this debate. Let’s go to the video… Continue reading

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Filed under Anderson Varejao, basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Cavs scramble for 2OT win

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It took him 50 minutes of playing time, but Lebron James finally put the game out of reach when his second free throw found the bottom of the net with :14 seconds to go. James finished with 31 points, but had a rough shooting night, hitting only 10 of 25 shots, and none of his 5 three point attempts. Fortunately for the Cavs, he was money from the free throw line, hitting 11 of 13. Zydrunas Illgauskas had another big game for the Cavs, scoring 24 points and grabbing 11 boards, but perhaps his biggest play of the game was a block of Andrew Bogut that would have tied the game with :15 seconds to go. After the jump, the worst thing I’ve written all year- Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

James, Varejao return, Hughes stars

When we signed Larry Hughes back in ’05, this was the kind of performance we hoped to see.

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This one was over before it started. Actually, it wasn’t over until the Cavs’ trio of LeBron James, Larry Hughes and Andy Varejao took the court with 6 minutes to go in the first quarter. Then the rout was on. The Cavs slashed, dished and shot their way to a 118-105 victory, that really wasn’t that close. Larry Hughes led the way with 36 points on 13 of 17 shooting, including 5 of 8 from deep. He played only 26 minutes, but was very effective in his time on the floor. Hughes was free to roam the court playing a true shooting guard in his minutes tonight. According to coach Mike Brown, that is the role Hughes will play from now on. In fact, Brown said he intends to bring Hughes off the bench. Certainly he has the ability to energize the team and provide a boost coming off the bench. Now, let’s not get crazy and think that he will shoot 76% and score 30+ every night, but if he can provide that 15-20 point lift, especially when LeBron is resting this team is dangerous.

Continue reading

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Filed under Anderson Varejao, basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Danny Ferry, Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Shannon Brown, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Kidd out with migraine (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

Pat saw this report today and passed it along to me. Very interesting.

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The original report comes from Yahoo Sports. The article insinuates that Jason Kidd, who didn’t play in New Jersey’s game yesterday against the Knicks, sat out not because of a headache as is being reported, but because he is angry with management for not building a championship caliber team. Apparently Jason would like to be traded, more specifically, to be traded in order to play with LeBron.

There was no migraine headache holding Jason Kidd out of the New Jersey Nets’ loss to the New York Knicks Wednesday night, but a superstar sending a message to a floundering franchise that he’s irate with management and teammates, several league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

As the Nets flew back to New Jersey late Tuesday from a victory over Cleveland, sources said Kidd already had decided he would be sitting out against the Knicks in the Meadowlands. Kidd didn’t tell Nets officials until Wednesday afternoon, but several people inside and outside the organization were made aware of the meaning behind his sick day.

Kidd’s agent, Jeff Schwartz, isn’t believed to have formally demanded a trade, but Wednesday’s bold act could be the precursor to starting that process. Two sources said Kidd has been a constant text messaging partner with LeBron James since playing with him this summer on Team USA and that the Cavaliers are his preferred destination.

Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Shannon Brown, Sports, trade talk, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

LeBron injured, Cavs embarrassed

Everyone cross your fingers. Wait…not you LeBron, you rest yours.

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LeBron James injured the index finger on his non-shooting hand in the second quarter of last night’s game against the Pistons. He played only 20 minutes of the game, but still managed to lead the team in scoring (15) and assists (3). Ouch. Final score, Detroit 109, Cleveland 74.

This is one the Cavs will forget about. Assuming James is alright of course. Without James the Cavs were sunk. In all honesty, they were in for an uphill battle before he went out. Playing their 4th game in 5 days, and immediately after an emotional OT game against the Celtics, LeBron was going to have to carry the team anyways. This is one of those games that if you were a gambler would have won you some serious money. The writing was on the wall for this one. I’d have taken the Pistons, the under, and if someone would take the bet, the under on Zydrunas matching his season averages. Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Detroit Pistons, Drew Gooden, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Now that’s more like it!

The Celtics came into Cleveland with the league’s best record. They ran into a Cavs team determined to remind them who the defending conference champs are.

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This was a truly great game. Both teams made runs, and each had big baskets or defensive stops to keep the game within reach. Back and forth they went. The Cavs won the first period, the Celtics roared back in the second. The Cavs came out strong in the third, then lost the lead in the fourth. They made a serious run with about 5 minutes left in the game, only to see Boston storm back to take the lead again. In the final minute Ray Allen missed on two free throws after Sasha nailed a huge three in the corner. LeBron held for a final shot, but missed sending the game to the OT.

This was one of those games that anyone could have won. Had it gone a few minutes longer I’m sure the Celtics would have made another run to tie it, or take the lead. But the clock ran out on Boston, and the Cavs came away with only the second win against the Celtics this season, 109-104.

LeBron was his usual, pouring in 38 points including 11 in the extra frame. He had a team high 13 assists to go along with 4 boards, 2 steals and 2 huge blocks. The story of the game however was Drew Gooden. Gooden had 24 points and 13 rebounds, but absolutely caught fire in the 3rd with 16 points on only 8 attempts. He grabbed some huge rebounds (5 to be exact) for the Cavs in the overtime as well. Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Tigers, Drew Gooden, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

MVP or bust

LeBron had his 4th triple double of the year, and his second in as many nights.

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The scary part is that he didn’t even seem to be giving his best effort. In the end his 30 point, 11 board, 10 assist performance was good enough to lead the Cavs to their 3rd straight win, and 4th in 5 games. The Pacers were outmatched without star Jermaine O’Neal, who missed his third game with a knee injury. But despite the disadvantage, the Pacers nearly stole this one.

While LeBron was on the bench resting (wait, stop me if you’ve heard this one before), the Cavs surrendered the 10 point lead they had. LeBron returned to take control of the game. LeBron didn’t shoot particularly well, especially from behind the arc where he was 1-6. But the offense ran through him, especially after Gibson picked up his 6th foul and ejection following a technical after only 15 minutes. Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Daniel Gibson, Drew Gooden, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

A little help from his friends…a little

The Cavs hit some outside shots to give LeBron a little help in beating the Raptors.

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Don’t get me wrong, they still needed a triple double effort from LeBron. And that’s exactly what he gave them. James finished with 37 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists. It was just enough to edge Toronto 111-108.

Chris Bosh scored at will for the Raptors, collecting a career high 41 points. He had help from a former Cav, Jason Kapono who had 17 points, including a three pointer near the end of the game that kept the outcome in question until the very end. Continue reading

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Dunk you very much…

Hope you have a great Thanksgiving. We’re thankful so many of you have made us a regular stop on the net.

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Last night LeBron James and Kosta Koufos made Ohio proud with spectacular performances. For Kosta it was a coming out party with a national audience. He scored 24 and grabbed 9 boards. I don’t want to steal Pat’s thunder, so I’ll just say the Bucks looked better than the more experience, and ranked, Syracuse Orange.

As for LeBron? Ho-hum. Another 45 point performance. The Cavs get a win over hapless Minnesota. Doesn’t quite dull the sting of that home loss Tuesday. Can I just say that Zydrunas played 35 minutes against the Bucks and then 33 minutes the next day? Man, even the Cavs’ beat writers are starting to pick up on the trend we spotted three weeks ago. Big Z is logging way too many minutes.

Have a great day with family and friends. Don’t forget to set your fantasy line-ups!

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Filed under basketball, Big Ten, Buckeyes, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, college basketball, Kosta Koufos, LeBron James, Ohio State, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Not to sound like a broken record or anything…

This by the way is not a foul in the NBA.

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The refs determined that this was a jump ball. Really? Jump ball? I can see that Turkoglu is in fact touching the ball. I’ll give you that. Seems to me that the guy draping himself over LeBron with a knee in his back might have actually fouled him while trying to tie up the ball. But hey, what do I know right?

I do know that LeBron had his third triple double of the season. 39 points, 13 rebounds and 14 assists. He hit three monster free throws to send the game into overtime. I know that he made a tremendous jump shot to get the lead in the OT period.

I also know that for a change someone else had a hot hand. Daniel Gibson didn’t miss all night. 5-5 for the evening, including 4-4 from deep. I only know that from the box score. See I didn’t get to start watching the game until a few minutes were left in regulation. So I actually didn’t see Gibson shoot the ball. I saw Sasha miss 3 shots. But never laid eyes on Gibson with the ball in his hands. Now, I’m not a coach in the NBA, but it would seem to me that perhaps a play should have been designed to get Gibson the ball, seeing as how he hadn’t missed a shot all night. Continue reading

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Filed under basketball, Cavs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Damon Jones, Daniel Gibson, Larry Hughes, LeBron James, NBA, Sasha Pavlovic, Sports, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Running on empty…

6 games in 9 days caught up to the Cavs last night, who simply ran out of gas.

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After a good win against the Clippers, the Cavs were spent when they arrived in Denver. Obviously the Nuggets played well. Allen Iverson was shooting the roof off the building, Carmelo got his and J.R. Smith came off the bench for 29. Those three accounted for 88 points. For the Cavs’ starters it was LeBron with 27 and (crickets chirp) nobody.

It didn’t help that Larry Hughes was ejected after arguing about fouls after 4 minutes. Daniel Gibson was abused in the post, and once again found himself in foul trouble (a disturbing trend early this season). Zydrunas was playing with lead weights around his legs, after playing 39 minutes in LA. I’m telling you, we cannot play Z this many minutes a game. The injury watch is on for Z. Continue reading

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