CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – Cavs coach Byron Scott has been preaching that this seasons Cavs team is head and tails better than last year.
The results have yet to show that, but every now and then, the team seems to rise up and show just how good they could be if they can get it together.
Tuesday night they did put it together, getting a 40-point night from last years rookie of the year Kyrie Irving, holding off the Boston Celtics 95-90.
“We had a better second half,” Scott said. “I thought our guys came out with a better sense of urgency, I thought we we hung in.”
The win is the 11th of the year for the Cavs, sending the Celtics to their fourth straight setback as they fall to 20-21 on the season.
It was maybe the rarest of wins of the year for the Cavs, as it came after trailing after three quarters, the first time this season they have won after down three. They improve to 1-23 in that department.
The win would not have even been possible with the efforts down the stretch for Irving, who had 19 in the first quarter, but will be remembered for his play in the final period.
Irving popped in 15 in the final 12 minutes, including scoring the Cavs last seven points in the last 52 seconds, including taking Celtics guard Rajon Rondo to the hole for a layup and foul for a key three-point play.
“I think he sets the tone,” Scott said. “I think when he is aggressive everyone sees that, and tonight I thought he was aggressive the whole game.”
The Cavs defense played tough in the final stanza, holding Boston to 17 points while scoring 25 in the decisive fourth quarter.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak to the Celtics, a key stat was the fact the Celtics were held to 38 percent shooting.
The Cavs shot 56 percent in the fourth quarter, while the Celtics hit just 22 percent in that final 12 minutes.
Tristian Thompson continues to play better, scoring 21 points and grabbing nine rebounds. Alonzo Gee hit for 10 points with six boards.
The Celtics got 17 from Rondo, but Paul Pierce, who hit for 40 in the last Boston win over the Cavs, had 12 points, and was just 3-for-15 from the field.
The win puts Cleveland at 11-32 on the season.
The Cavs will be back at home Friday night when they play host to the Milwaukee Bucks at 7:30pm.