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News » Someone may challenge Cavs, but not the Hawks

Someone may challenge Cavs, but not the Hawks

Someone may challenge Cavs, but not the Hawks

Game Time: Cavaliers 105, Hawks 85

With its latest annihilation of Atlanta, Cleveland is now 6-0 in the playoffs. However, Cavs fans are advised not to get overly excited because:

  • The Pistons were the worst team to play in the first round.

  • Especially without Al Horford and Marvin Williams, the Hawks are the worst team to reach the second round.

    For sure, the Cavs did just about everything right in Game 2.

  • Their energy was ferocious from the start, and their nonstop hustle was exemplified by Zydrunas Ilgauskas' hitting the floor to successfully rescue a loose ball when the Cavs were up by 28 points.

  • LeBron James hit half of his six jumpers, including a 40-foot trey.

  • All of the Cavs were admirably unselfish on every play. Not one shot was forced or taken too quickly.

  • Delonte West and Mo Williams did whatever they wanted to against Mike Bibby's inept defensive efforts.

  • The Cavs' defense was so effective it seemed as though they'd studied and memorized Atlanta's playbook.

  • Cleveland's interior defensive rotations were flawless. So much so that — except for a put-back — the Hawks' half-court sets couldn't generate anything resembling a layup during the first quarter.

    2009 NBA playoffs

    Thursday's games

    • Cavs 105, Hawks 85 (Cavs 2-0)

    Wednesday's games

    • Celtics 112, Magic 94 (Tied 1-1)
    • Lakers 111, Rockets 98 (Tied 1-1) analysis

    • Playoff results, schedule
    • 2009 NBA Playoff Central
    • Rosen: Cavs unchallenged so far
    • Rosen: Suspensions of disbelief
    • Hill: Lakers, Rockets get rough
    • Behrendt: Lakers fight back in Game 2
    • Goodman: Celtics still have pride
    • Rosenberg: LeBron is best of era


    • Postgame: Hawks-Cavs, Game 2


    • Wednesday's action | Tuesday

  • Early on, the Cavs controlled their offensive glass and gained numerous extra shots.

  • They ran amok and did an excellent job of finishing on the break.

  • Anderson Varejao buried Josh Smith in the low post, and even knocked down a 17-foot jumper.

  • Their strategy of doubling Joe Johnson's every touch worked to perfection.

  • And with Johnson probably out for Game 3, the Cavs should be even more devastating in Atlanta.

    Of course, a team can defeat only the teams they play. Still, the Cavs have yet to tested — and may not be until the Finals.

    Meanwhile, the Hawks did just about everything wrong in Game 2:

  • Johnson couldn't find the basket with a road map, shot an air-ball, and suffered a severely sprained right ankle.

  • Smith hit only one of his five attempted jumpers, also shot an air-ball, and was assessed his requisite technical foul.

  • All told, the Hawks missed nine layups.

  • Their interior rotations were nonexistent, and the rest of their defense wasn't any better.

  • From the get-go, the Hawks played as though they knew for sure that they would lose.

  • For most of the game, they trailed by 25-30 points, and were saved from being totally embarrassed only because their subs played harder than Cleveland's subs in the extended garbage time. A poor consolation.

    As the game unfolded, there were only two questions that had to be answered:

    How many points would LBJ score?

    Twenty-seven in only 31 minutes.

    When would the Hawks certify their defeat by going belly-up?

    Early in the second quarter.

    It seems impossible for the Hawks to avoid being swept. Indeed, after Game 4 on Monday, the last words will undoubtedly belong to Porky Pig: "Tha-tha-that's all, folks!"

  • Author: Fox Sports
    Author's Website:
    Added: May 8, 2009


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