Cavaliers Head Coach Byron Scott knew exactly why the Cavaliers could not close out their game vs. Milwaukee at Quicken Loans Arena Friday night.
"It's pretty simple. When you come out with a lack of energy and lack of effort that we came out with, you are not going to win a whole lot of games."
He was referring to the 27 turnovers, six of which came in the fourth quarter, that the Cavaliers surrendered. The Bucks were able to cash in on those miscues for 23 points. The Bucks outscored the Cavs only by by one point in the final twelve minutes, but the inability to protect home court did them in. The Cavaliers fell to 3-7 at home with the loss.
"We had mentioned from day-one about protecting home court," said Coach Scott after the game. "It was mentioned even before training came started. It's just not registering. Twenty seven turnovers speaks for itself."
This was one of those games where the top scorer needed to take over. Irving attempted six shots in the fourth quarter, but only two of them went in. The former number one overall pick drove hard to the basket mid way through the second quarter, and came down with a boom after the contact from Milwauke's Doron Lamb. It was a scary moment that took the breath of the fourteen thousand plus fans for a moment, but Irving recovered without leaving the game. The team is taking precautionary measures to take a further look at his left cheek.
Milwaukee's top scorer, Monta Ellis, appeared unguardable at times. He tallying up 33 points, with nine coming in the final quarter.
Defense really was not the problem, though Coach Scott points to a lack of offensive execution, leading to several mistakes, for the team's second straight loss.
"We did a good job for the most part defensively tonight, but the lack of focus on the offensive end - there were times when I had no idea what we were running." Scott said. Their defense held the Bucks to just 40 percent shooting, but the could not step up when they needed to.
Guard C.J. Miles, other than Irving, who scored a team high 26, was just about the only Cavalier to have things flowing with the ball in his hands. He went three of five from behind the three point arc, and totaled 17 points at nights end.
"We really were not attacking them on offense,." Miles said in the locker room. "We took a lot of jumps shots. And then down the stretch Monta (Ellis) made a couple plays, and we did not make a couple plays."