Though he reassured Cavs reporters that the sky was not falling after a 100-97 loss to the Miami Heat on Tuesday, Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell said the team had to find a level of consistency to become a great one in a postgame press conference.
“I think we’re all tired of coming here and saying ‘we’re learning,'” Mitchell said. “You want to learn through success in different ways. We haven’t played well. It’s just the honest truth. We’ve just got to find a way to do that.
“That’s through all of us. Our defense has held up. Offensively, we have to pick it back up as a group. We’ll turn it around and get better.”
Donovan Mitchell scored 16 points, grabbed three rebounds and dished nine assists against the Heat, hitting six of his 17 shot attempts after he couldn’t quite get a rhythm going on pull-up 3-point attempts during the first quarter.
The Cavs held a 16-5 lead over the Heat halfway through the first quarter before an early scoring streak froze for several minutes. The Heat crawled back and tied things up at 18-18 with a 3-point jump shot from forward Jimmy Butler, who was listed as “questionable” before Tuesday’s game.
Cleveland fell to 21-6 at home after a back-and-forth battle that saw neither side hit a shot for almost four minutes in the fourth quarter. The game was within reach of the Cavs, Mitchell said, adding some disappointment to a much-needed win over the sixth-seeded team in the Eastern Conference.
“I think that’s why there’s a sense of disappointment,” Donovan Mitchell said. “We felt like we should have won this game. It’s a winnable game for us, especially on our home floor. We got out-executed in that way.
“That’s on us players on the floor. We have to go out there and do better.”
The Cavs will tip off against the Memphis Grizzlies at 7:30 p.m. EST on Thursday in Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse. The game will be broadcasted on TNT.