Cavaliers Begin Round 2 of 2016 Playoffs

LeBron James. The Cavaliers enjoy home court advantage and Round 2 starts in Cleveland (photo Urycki)
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 Round Two of the NBA playoffs kicks off tonight (Mon) at the Q.   The Cavaliers play host to the Atlanta Hawks,  a team they beat three out of three times in the regular season.   But as ideastream’s Mark Urycki reports, there’s a reason the Playoffs are considered a whole new season.

 

The Cavs swept the Detroit Pistons in the first round in four games and their top three players, Kyrie Irvin, LeBron James, and Kevin Love appear to be playing their best basketball of the year.  James was asked by reporters about his excellent numbers against the Hawks last year and this year.

“We don’t know nothing about these stats till you guys bring it to us.  And hopefully none of the guys hear them.” 

Last year, the Hawks dominated Cleveland in the regular season but then lost 4 straight in the playoffs.  James waves off any thought that last year's success makes it easier for the Cavs now. 

“It’s too much work both on the floor and mentally that you have to do to prepare for a playoff series, understanding how competition is going to be at its highest level.  So "easy" should never come into play when you talk about playoff basketball or basketball in general at this level.” 

Coach Tyronn Lue says Altanta is playing their best basketball of the season with a balanced attack.   Like the Cavs, the Hawks have big men who can score in the paint but also make outside jumpers.

But Cleveland did sweep them in the rtegular season, right?

James explained that past performance may not predict future success. 

“Because at the end of the day what happened in the past doesn’t define what happens today.  We’ve got to focus on the now.   It’s a team that had a very good challenge in the first round, a series against the Celtics,  And we understand their coach is going to have those guys well prepared and well driven.” 

The good news is the Cavs swept Detroit in Round 1 and have had a week to rest while Atlanta battled Boston.  The bad news is the Cavs have had a week to rest and may have gotten rusty.

 Game time is 7pm. 

 

 

Mark.Urycki@ideastream.org

 

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