|Game 18: 2013-2014 NBA Season|
|December 4th, 2013|
|Quicken Loans Arena - Cleveland, OH|
|5:00 PM MT|
|Altitude TV / 104.3 FM / 950 AM|
|Ty Lawson||PG||Kyrie Irving|
|Randy Foye||SG||C.J. Miles|
|Wilson Chandler||SF||Alonzo Gee|
|Kenneth Faried||PF||Tristan Thompson|
|J.J. Hickson||C||Andrew Bynum|
|Denver Stiffs||Blogs||Fear the Sword|
|Danilo Gallinari (ACL), JaVale McGee (stress fracture, leg) are both out||Injuries||None|
|The Nuggets have won 7 in a row, but are 0-2 on the second night of back-to-backs||Stat||Bynum has appeared in 13 games and started 8 of those contests|
Timmons: One of my favorite guys on the Cavs team is Tristan Thompson, he averages 10.8 points and 9.5 rebounds. How is he doing in your eyes? Any player that has surprised you thus far?
If there's a player that has surprised me in a good way, it's Andrew Bynum. When he was signed by the Cavaliers, nobody really thought he was going to be able to contribute anything significant until at least after the all star break, if at all. Now, he has played up to 30 minutes in a game and even plays on the second night of back to backs. The Miami Heat are holding Dwyane Wade out of the second night of a lot of back to backs. Think about that. It's ridiculous that Bynum is healthy and he's slowly getting his touch back. There's a lot of season to go, so we'll see if the team can fully adjust to having a traditional big man in the lineup and start looking better on offense.
Timmons: I have liked Hickson since his N.C. State days, what are your thoughts on him?
Kaczmarek: I don't care for JJ Hickson. When he was in Cleveland, he was a decent player but not a particularly smart one. He's obviously super athletic, but I always found that he lacked the focus to be a really useful player on a good team. His defensive effort left something to be desired. I'm very pleased that the Cavs opted to go with Thompson at power forward instead of Hickson. But I know he was productive in Portland, so I'll be interested to see how Hickson has improved since his time in Cleveland.
Timmons: Was the dust up between Mike Brown and Kyrie Irving a cause for concern? Has Irving responded to Brown with his play on the floor? Who wins tonight? Are you a game-by-game prediction guy?
Kaczmarek: The dust up was nothing as far as I'm concerned. Both Mike Brown and Kyrie said it was just a player and a coach interacting on the sidelines during the heat of a game. I haven't seen any carry over from that confrontation since it initially happened. If there's tension between the two of them, it's happening behind closed doors. Whether or not Kyrie responded to it is a good question. Kyrie makes a point to say that he is the leader of this team and that everything starts with effort and focus from him. I really believe that he wants that to be true, but right now he hasn't really stepped up.
It's important to remember that Kyrie is just 21 years old and is getting used to committing himself to the defensive end of the floor while scoring efficiently and being a leader. I think he'll figure it out, it's just going to take some time.
All of my logic says that the Cavs should win tonight. The Nuggets are on the second night of a back-to-back and on the road. The Cavs are at home and have been off since Saturday but literally nothing is a sure thing with this Cavs team. I'll predict a win for the Cavs, but I have zero confidence in that pick.
Big thanks to Conrad for joining us.
Nate_Timmons on Twitter