The Cleveland Cavaliers had two of the top five picks in this year's NBA Draft, but the players netted didn't push them to victory in their opening game of the season. Kyrie Irving and company will look to change that on Wednesday night against the Detroit Pistons, however, in a game scheduled to tip off at 6:30 p.m. on Fox Sports Ohio.
The Cavs should be quite familiar with the Pistons after playing them twice during the truncated preseason, but it's unclear whether or not that will give them the upper hand in Wednesday night's match-up. Conrad Kaczmarek from Fear The Sword indicates Cleveland could go a long way if they just score the buckets they're supposed to -- at the rim.
One of the main problems that the Cavaliers had against Toronto was finishing at the rim. As a team, the Cavs shot just 16-31 on shots at the rim. Much of this can be attributed to the length of the Raptors in Ed Davis and Amir Johnson, but some of it can be explained by simple overexcitement and those first game jitters. We saw the Cavs miss a bunch of real easy shots early in the game, which is likely a sign of just being too excited and not focusing. As the game progressed, they seemed to play more under control and make less silly mistakes. The Pistons do not have quite the same amount of length in the paint as the Raptors do, although Jonas Jerebko and Greg Monroe are relatively decent defenders. If I were to pick a key for tonight's game, I'd say it is the Cavaliers' ability to finish at the rim. If they can get some easy buckets in the paint early on, it will go a long way towards winning.
Following Wednesday night's game, the Cavs will be in action next on Friday as they go on the road to play the Indiana Pacers.