We know the Cavaliers’ defense is bad. But how bad in comparison to the rest of the league is measurable, and the measurement is ugly. Tha answer: very ugly.
“When Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters combined for 52 points in a road win over the Los Angeles Clippers last week, we started to see some real potential in the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Since then, the Cavs have lost four straight games. And on Tuesday night, they took over as the worst defensive team in the league, having allowed 107.8 points per 100 possessions, eight more than the league average.
The Cavs’ defense actually ranks in the top eight in forcing turnovers and defensive rebounding. But it has major holes on the interior, despite the presence of Anderson Varejao, an excellent defender.
Through Tuesday’s loss in Brooklyn, the Cavs are allowing their opponents to shoot a ridiculous 76.4 percent in the restricted area.”
John Schuhmann wrote the piece, and breaks down (with video) five awful instances of defensive lapses. It is a great piece and worth your time.
“We all know that the Cavs are a team of the future and that this season’s results don’t matter much in Cleveland. But better defensive habits must start now. If the defense doesn’t improve as this season goes on, the culture will be affected and the development of their backcourt will be hindered.”
[Related: Byron Scott questions Cavs' passion and competitiveness]