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Game Preview: Cavs Look For 4th Consecutive Win Against Hawks Tonight

Cavs Nation’s Matt Thomas

Your Cleveland Cavaliers (4-3) come home for a Saturday night bout with the Atlanta Hawks (5-3) tonight at 7:30pm. The Atlanta Hawks are coming off a win against the Heat at home 114-103 Friday night. The Cavaliers land in Cleveland from Boston after defeating the Celtics last night; they will look to win their first set of the season. Here are today’s starting lineups:

Cleveland Cavaliers

PG – Kyrie Irving
SG – Shawn Marion
SF – LeBron James
PF – Kevin Love
C – Anderson Varejao

Injured: PG Matthew Dellavedova (OUT w/ Grade 2 MCL Sprain)

Atlanta Hawks

PG – Jeff Teague
SG – Kyle Korver
SF – Thabo Sefolosha
PF – Paul Millsap
C – Al Horford

Injured: SF DeMarre Carroll (DAY-TO-DAY w/ strained groin)

{adinserter 2}Cleveland is coming into tonight’s matchup after pulling off a miraculous comeback against the Boston Celtics Friday night to get above .500 (4-3 record) for the first time, winning it 122-121. James scored 41 points on the night and led the Cavaliers back from a 19 point 4th quarter deficit (down 17 to start 4th), including 10 in the 4th and 8 of the last 9 Cavalier points. Kyrie Irving scored 27, Kevin Love finished with 12 and 15 rebounds, Anderson Varejao put in 16 points, and Dion Waiters contributed 10 in the comeback effort. LeBron James comes into tonight’s matchup against the Hawks averaging 27.5 against them in his 10 year career.

Getting warmed up:

The Hawks staved off the Miami Heat and their comeback hopes in Atlanta as they defeated the Heat 114-103. For Atlanta, they had a balanced effort as they mostly always will, having 8 players in double figures including their starting 5 led by Millsap and Horford as well as Mike Scott, Dennis Schroder, and Shelvin Mack off the bench.

This will once again be an intriguing matchup of the frontcourts as Kevin Love and Anderson Varejao will have to deal with Paul Millsap and Al Horford, both all stars in past years. Millsap comes in as their all around leader averaging 16.9 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 2.0 steals, 0.9 blocks and 1.4 threes in a career high 36 minutes per game.

Although stopping the frontcourt will be an issue on its own, Cleveland also has to get out to the sharpshooter Kyle Korver (16.1 pts, 3.8 threes per game) and keep Jeff Teague (16.3 pts, 8 asts) out of the paint if they want any chance at winning this game. Cleveland score 105.1 points per game but allows 105.6 points to their opponents. Atlanta score 102.9 points per game and allows 99.8 points, so if those statistics have any effect on the game, there shouldn’t be very much defense played as we have 2 balanced scoring powerhouses going at it.

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