Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/17/13
Most of the focus will be on Kyrie Irving's scoring as the Cavaliers won their first road game of the season, 103-96, in overtime over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night at Verizon Center. Yes, he tied his career-high 41 points. Yes, he had 9 of the Cavs 13 points in overtime. But Cavs coach Mike Brown said Irving's biggest contribution came between quarters and during timeouts in spirited conversations on the bench. "Kyrie was terrific in the huddles,'' Brown said as his team snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 4-7, 1-6 on the road. "He showed some true leadership throughout the course of the game, especially when we were down 15 in the first half. "If he had a microphone on in the huddles, everybody would be able to appreciate the way he kept everybody into it mentally. The other veterans stepped up and helped him out. We had a lot of good performances from a lot of different guys.'' Tristan Thompson had 15 points and 12 rebounds. Andrew Bynum returned to the starting lineup after missing two games to deal with a family medical matter and had 6 points and 3 rebounds in 21:11. Earl Clark, playing power forward at the start of the fourth quarter, hit three big 3-pointers as the Cavs opened the fourth quarter on a 14-8 run to take a 78-77 lead with 7 minutes left. Bradley Beal had 28 points for Washington, 2-7. But he scored just two in overtime as the Wizards were outscored, 13-6. Cleveland held Washington to 39.8 percent shooting (37 of 93), its best defensive performance in seven games. The Cavs held the Minnesota Timberwolves to 36.2 percent shooting in a 93-92 victory on Nov. 4 at The Q. "It was a heck of a win for our guys,'' Brown said. "They just kept fighting.'' They had to fight back after falling behind by 15 in the second quarter. "I pulled everybody in and told them we had to pick it up defensively,'' Irving said when asked what he was saying in the team huddles, "just telling them our offensive game is going to take care of itself throughout the game. Start it on the defensive end. We just had to pick up our aggressiveness.''
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