After a tough loss to the Boston Celtics on Wednesday, the Cavaliers need a win, preferably by 10 points or more, in order to regain some confidence.
Also, the Cavaliers have now lost six games in a row, and they are only 2-10 in March. The team has been shorthanded with guards Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters out of the lineup due to injuries, but they have been in position to win a few games. The team needs something to go right in order to bring back some positive momentum, and the 76ers should be just what the doctor ordered.
The 76ers are currently 28-43, and their record is not that much better than the 22-48 mark that the Cavaliers have put up this season.
Philadelphia has gone 5-5 in their last 10 games, which looks bad for the Cavaliers.
The point that looks good for the Cavaliers, though, is that the 76ers are just 7-26 on the road this season, and Friday night’s game will be played in Cleveland.
The 76ers are a deep team, but the Cavaliers should be able to have success against them. The key will be to slow down guard Jrue Holiday, who is leading the team with 18.4 points and 8.5 assists per game.
The Cavaliers will not have Irving once again, and they may still be without Waiters, too. Backup guards Wayne Ellington and Shaun Livingston have been starting in place of Irving and Waiters, and it will be important for them to slow down Holiday and the rest of the 76ers guards. Ellington and guard C.J. Miles also need to keep hitting shots from the outside for the Cavaliers.
One interesting match-up will be when the Cavaliers guards take on 76ers backup guard Jeremy Pargo, who started the season in Cleveland. Pargo had a few big games with the Cavaliers, but was too inconsistent so the team let him go. He will be fired up for the Friday night game, and the Cavaliers will have to watch him closely so that he doesn’t put up 20 points.
It will also be important for big men Tyler Zeller, Marreese Speights and Tristan Thompson to play well against the 76ers and contain Spencer Hawes and Thaddeus Young. Hawes and Young are both having nice seasons for the 76ers.
The 76ers have a lot of good players, but the one player they were counting on the most this season, Andrew Bynum, has not played a game. Without Bynum, the 76ers have struggled and a promising season was derailed. The 76ers expected to be playing for a top seed in the playoffs right now, and instead they are just trying to finish the season. They should come into Cleveland somewhat demoralized, and the Cavaliers need to come out fired up after the last tough loss on Wednesday.
The Cavaliers desperately need a win, and they should get one on Friday night.