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Cavs host Nets the night before Thanksgiving

NBA: Cleveland Cavaliers at Washington Wizards Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

They almost did the impossible. On Sunday evening, the Brooklyn Nets fell behind by as much as 28 points to the Golden State Warriors. From that point on, they went on an impassioned run to make the game close late. However, the Warriors proved to be too much and they eventually came away with a seven point win. Even with the L, there were some good things to take away from the comeback and they'll look to build on them going forward.

The opponent tonight will be the Cleveland Cavaliers. It’s been an uneasy start for the reigning Eastern Conference Champions, but it appears that they’ve started to put it all together. They’ve won their last five games, including a 28 point BEATEMDOWN against the Pistons in Detroit on Monday night.

Where to follow the game

YES Network on TV. WCBS 880 AM on radio. Tip after 7.


No D'Angelo Russell tonight. Trevor Booker is questionable with an ankle injury. And of course, no Jeremy Lin.

Substitute point guard Derrick Rose is dealing with a left ankle injury and is out a few weeks. Substitute for the substitute point guard Iman Shumpert hurt his left knee on Friday and will be out tonight. On the bright side, the original point guard Isaiah Thomas is recovering nicely from offseason hip surgery and is getting close to making his Cavs debut. I almost forgot Tristan Thompson is out, too.

The game

The Nets won the first meeting in October.

Spencer Dinwiddie has been playing well all year, and will have the advantage at point tonight. Jose Calderon wasn’t expected to contribute much of anything this year, but he’s been pressed into starting PG duty thanks to injuries. Calderon is still awful on defense, and Brooklyn should look to make him work overtime guarding pick and rolls this evening. if they can force him out early, then the Cavs will have to rely on Dwyane Wade for longer than they’d like.

Over the summer, Tyronn Lue promised to make Kevin Love a bigger part of the team’s offense. And during this winning streak, he’s managed to do so. Love is averaging a cool 20 points on 52.7 percent shooting from the field during the winning streak and has been the team’s second best scoring option after LeBron. They’re posting Love up more often, and assuming Booker is limited/out thanks to the ankle injury, Tyler Zeller will

Player to watch: LeBron James

In my lifetime, four people have made claim to the title of “King of New York.” They are: The Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, and now LeBron James. When we last saw Bron play against a New York team, he was trolling Knicks fans and broke their hearts with a game winning three over Kristaps Porzingis late in the game to complete a crazy comeback. Amazingly, he might be having his best offensive season. He’s at career highs in field goal percentage (58.2), three point percentage (41.3), and free throw percentage (78.3). An elbow injury caused to change his shooting form, and it’s paying massive dividends. From watching him, it seems as if he’s perfected that step back jumper and when you combine that with his low post presence, you’ve got the perfect basketball player. The turnovers are a bit on the high side, but you can live with it considering everything else he does.

Off the court, he’s as dominant as ever. He’s got a bunch of business ventures and side projects, but those are minor compared to him finding and utilizing his voice on issues related to race and society. GQ Magazine spoke with him over the summer, and this part is something a lot of us have come to understand in greater detail over the past couple of years:

"It's heavy when a situation occurs either with myself or with someone in a different city, i.e., Trayvon, Mike Brown. I have to go home and talk to my 13- and 10-year-old sons, even my 2-year-old daughter, about what it means to grow up being an African-American in America. Because no matter how great you become in life, no matter how wealthy you become, how people worship you, or what you do, if you are an African-American man or African-American woman, you will always be that."

And that’s it.

The Nets are gonna throw a mix of people at Bron, with DeMarre Carroll batting leadoff. Carroll will look to force James into turning the ball over eight times like he and the Nets were able to do in the first meeting. LeBron didn’t turn it over at all on Monday and if he takes better care of the ball, he’ll have even more opportunities to wreck opposing defenses. The Nets have acquitted themselves well for the most part when facing superstar players, and will have to do it one more time if they wanna pull off the upset.

From the Vault

During Sunday’s broadcast, my man Ryan Ruocco mentioned that Steph Curry is third all time in free throw percentage, trailing only Steve Nash and Mark Price. With that in mind, let’s take a trip back in time to see the former Cavs guard in action.

More reading: Fear the Sword

Happy Thanksgiving!