And just like that, the Cavs have run their losing streak to 21 straight games. It’s been a streak unlike anything that we have ever seen. Not only are they resetting the mark futility on a nightly basis, but they are doing it in the most humiliating way possible. In all honesty, I’ve reached my breaking point when it comes to the Cavs. I can’t watch them. I don’t want to read about them so I know that nobody else wants to either. On top of all that I sure as hell don’t want to be writing about them. The only problem is that we are in that lull at the end of January where the only things going on are meaningless basketball games and the Super Bowl, so it looks like I have no real choice here.
Obviously, last night’s loss wasn’t just any loss. It was the 21st consecutive loss and it came at the hands of Lebron James and the Miami Heat (The Cavs have broken me down so badly that I can’t even bear to ridicule Lebron with nicknames anymore. What’s the point? They’re good, we’re not). Surprisingly the game wasn’t all bad. The Cavs were somewhat competitive. Naturally that perspective is completely relative given how things have gone lately. Losing by 15 at stretches is competitive when you’re accustomed to being down by 30. The Cavs even pulled to within three points to start the third thanks to a 10-4 run. Naturally the law of averages kicked in, the Heat woke up, and the Cavs ended the quarter down 17 thanks to a 19-5 Miami run to close out the quarter. As usual, it never got any closer as the Heat closed out the Cavs 117-90. Ouch.
The Cavs were their usual less than mediocre selves. Antawn Jamison continued his recent tear scoring 21 and grabbing 10 boards to lead the Cavs. Manny Harris also chipped in 20. Meanwhile, Lebron James and Dwyane Wade did the majority of the damage for the Heat scoring 24 and 34, respectively. As you can probably imagine, defense was more of a suggestion than an actual requirement for the Cavs. Essentially if you’ve watched any Cavs game in the winless month of January than you can fill in the blanks.
So where does this leave the Cavs? Well, for starters it leave the Cavs in the exact same spot they’ve been in for the past few weeks. Dead last in the East. Naturally, that national media is beginning to pile on the situation because that’s what the national media does. In most instances I’m ok with it. I can handle a good-natured ribbing because it’s the truth. The Cavs are terrible. What I do take offense to is when media members go beyond the point of gentle ribbing and are down right unprofessional. Yahoo Sports analysts Greg Anthony, Marc Spears, and Charissa Thomas joked about whether or not the Cavs could win in the D-League right now. While it is a good question, it doesn’t make it appropriate or even that insightful.
At the same time I’m not going to say the criticism hasn’t been earned. What have the Cavs done thus far to show any indication that they know how to start rebuilding this? Absolutely nothing. Yes, losing a lot is the first step, but the Cavs need to make some trades, acquire some draft picks, and find a way to rid themselves of long-term salaries. We’re getting closer and closer to the trading deadline and not a single Cavalier has turned up in trade rumors. Williams, Hickson, and Jamison are all valuable trade chips. Even a healthy Daniel Gibson could net a decent return at this point. Unfortunately, all the Cavs have done is stand pat. That’s not going to get the job done.
So stay tuned Cavs fans. The next few months are going to be a bumpy ride.