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Written by Rich Swerbinsky

Rich Swerbinsky

 Team Avoids Letdown, Wins Sixth Straight Game

It was the perfect spot for a letdown.  You see it all the time in the NBA.  The Cavs were coming off an emotional come from behind win over the Suns on Sunday.  Huge games with the Nets and the Heat looming.  And they were on the second of back-to-backs, playing a terrible Bobcats team missing their two star players, Emeka Okafor and Gerald Wallace.

The Cavs appeared determined to not let this happen, beating the Bobcats 103-91 in a game that was not nearly as close as the final score indicated.  Kudos to coach Mike Brown for making sure the team was up for this one.  After making me scratch my head many times early on this season, I've been more impressed with what I've seen from the Al Roker look alike as of late.  The Cavs shot out of the gates, leading 32-20 after one quarter, and never looked back.

At only one point did things get hairy.  The Bobcats made a little run to get the game to 39-32 midway through the second quarter.  LeBron James responded with seven straight points, keying a 10-0 Cavaliers run, and the team never looked back.  The Cavs led 56-39 at the half, and 83-57 after three, and coach Brown was able to rest LeBron for the entire fourth quarter.  James ended with 30 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, and 5 steals.

LeBron was aided once again by Anderson Varejao, who had 6 points and 10 rebounds in 20 incredibly active minutes off the bench.  Coach Brown was also able to rest Zydrunas Ilgauskas again as a result.  Big Z had 19 points in just 18 minutes, including another 7-7 performance from the foul line.  For the year, Z is shooting 87% from the foul line.  Drew Gooden had another bad game, going 0-7 from the field and scoring just one point.  Gooden did grab 12 rebounds.

Luke Jackson also got some time, capitalizing on rest for LeBron and a missing Ira Newble, who was sidelined with a migraine headache.  Jackson played 18 minutes, and scored 10 points.

The win kept the Cavs undefeated against the Charlotte franchise, running their career mark to 5-0 against them.  It extended the teams winning streak to six games, with four of those wins coming on the road.  The Bobcats lost their twelfth straight, and are simply a terrible basketball team without Okafor and Wallace.  The team was also missing rookie Sean May and shooting guard Keith Bogans.

The Cavs moved to 26-17 on the year, and now enjoy a 3 1/2 game lead over the Milwaukee Bucks for the #4 seed in the East, and also second place in the Central Division.  The Cavs host the Nets Wednesday before traveling to South Beach to play Shaq, Dwayne Wade, and the Heat on Thursday night.

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