Next Stretch Of Games Could Be A Turning Point For The Cleveland Cavaliers

By Nick Claussen


David Richard – USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers are currently on their longest home stand of the season, and it could be a turning point for the team.

Heading into the seven-game home stand, the Cavaliers record stood at just 13-34, which was the third-worst in the NBA.

The team has shown signs of life recently, though, and has a shot at moving up in the standings during the home stand and in the second half of the season.

The next seven games start off terribly, with the Cavaliers facing the Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday night. The Cavaliers are probably going to lose that game, and the best that fans can realistically hope for is to keep the game close. Or maybe if Kevin Durant has an off night shooting and Russell Westbrook takes too many shots for the Thunder, the Cavaliers can steal a win.

Over the next six games, though, the Cavaliers play plenty of beatable teams. The next six games, in order, are against the Charlotte Bobcats, Orlando Magic, Denver Nuggets, Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs and New Orleans Hornets.

The Cavaliers have a realistic chance to go 3-3 in that stretch, and I could see them even going 5-2 over the seven-game home stand.

This is the most that the team has played at home all season, and it will give Head Coach Byron Scott more time to work on different areas of emphasis with the players. The Cavaliers need to become much better defensively, and not having to go on the road for roughly three weeks should give the team more time to work on issues like defense.

Also, with Shaun Livingston, Marreese Speights and Wayne Ellington still being relatively new to the team, the home stand should give them more time to get comfortable with the other Cavaliers on the floor.

In addition, by playing at home for so many games, the Cavaliers should not have any excuses for playing without enough energy. Lack of energy has been a problem at times for this team, and playing in front of the home fans and not having to travel should help the Wine and Gold in this area.

The Cavaliers have some talent, and they are playing plenty of teams that are beatable in the home stand. Of course, every team considers the Cavaliers to be beatable, and they may be coming in to Cleveland hoping to pick up a victory.

These home games, though, should help to make the Cavaliers a more cohesive team that plays better defense and brings more energy to the floor. If the Cavaliers can do that, it will help them right now and for the rest of the season.

The Cavaliers have talent, and the depth that has been added to the team recently has been a huge improvement. If the players can pick up a few wins in this home stand, it will give them more confidence and hopefully build some momentum for this season and eve for heading into next year.

Seven games may not seem like a big deal, but it could be a hugely important for the Cavaliers for the rest of this season and beyond.

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