Cavs players have grumbled that LeBron James is slowing ball movement

When coach Nate McMillan went small Friday night, came up big. After a review, James was given his fourth technical foul of the season, and he amped it up another level. He's played in just 21 games and started only five while struggling with a calf strain.

Pacers guard Lance Stephenson, who had 16 points and 11 rebounds, made a driving layup with 3:13 left to cut Cleveland's lead to 95-93.

Nothing should be taken away from the performance of the Raptors, as DeMar DeRozan is playing well and the team is expected to give both the Cavaliers and Boston Celtics a run for the Eastern Conference title in May. Kevin Durant was the top scorer for the Warriors with 26 points. James posted 39 points in Cleveland's loss to the Bucks on December 19 and 14 assists in the Cavs' loss to the Kings on December 27. It's the first time he's ever had consecutive losses of more than 25 points. Victor Oladipo scored 19 including the huge three.

Isaiah Thomas, who will sit out tomorrow on the back-end of a back-to-back was only playing his fourth game with his new team after recovery from a right hip injury. They hit 18 3-pointers, a season-high for 3s allowed by the Cavs.

The four-time MVP wasn't amused. "He's a little dirty", James said. I didn't know if I was ready or not. "My bags have been half-packed since I got here. He played well, though". But let's not blame arguably the best player in the National Basketball Association for that, okay?

The result: IN, which trailed 26-6 about eight minutes into the game and still trailed 72-60 with 5:23 left IN the third, rallied.

One of the downfalls of Cleveland during that quarter was their 32 percent shooting from the field, while their defense allowed IN to hit for five 3-pointers.

"It's hard to get into his head, but tonight was [different]", Stephenson said. Cleveland played well after that but IN got kept it with an arm's length. Just got to find a way to get out of it. The Cavs opened -1 and were bet up to -2.5.

The Cavs played without four guards:, and. Cleveland simply can't defend, as Tyronn Lue's team owns the second-worst defensive rating in the league (109.5) ahead of only the lowly Kings (109.9).

The Cavaliers (26-15) will play the second of back-to-back games Friday night at IN (21-20). Turner has been out with an injured right elbow. "We had a lot of energy in the first half". "We got stops, we were able to get out in transition and then the threes started falling somewhere in the second quarter". "You've got to get on him and try to get into him".

Indiana's 97-95 victory over the Cavs on Friday night sends them into their longest western road trip of the season with a 22-20 record.

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