Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” plays on the Quicken Loans Arena jumbo-tron when the Cavaliers have the game basically in the books. Thursday night in game two of their best of seven series against the Atlanta Hawks, the Cavs could have played the song in the second quarter.
It was just that ugly.
Building at one point a 36-point lead, the Cavs were able to once again take care of business at home, easily, as they topped Atlanta 105-85 to build a 2-0 series lead. They seemed to do it without really breaking a sweat, and with basic ease. “Our guys did a nice job bringing energy and focus into the ball game,” Cavs coach Mike Brown said. Yeah Mike – ya think?
The Cavs are men among boys right now, and they are toying with their first two playoff opponents like nothing we’ve seen in the NBA for sometime. They never really had a close game vs Detroit in round one, and now after two games vs the Hawks, they are again making it look way too easy.
The Cavs are a perfect 6-0 in the postseason, and tied a league record by winning their sixth consecutive playoff game by double digits. The only other team to do it was the 2004 Indiana Pacers. “It was not easy, it may look easy but our guys are working extremely hard,” Brown said. “We can’t get too far ahead of ourselves.”
While Brown’s words are true, you can’t help but start to think about what a NBA championship parade in downtown Cleveland would be like come sometime in mid to late June. They are 10 wins away, and with the way they are rolling, it’s hard to think who is going to get in their way.
Thursday the beating started with the play of their and the league’s MVP – LeBron James. “King” James had 27 points on 9-of-14 shooing, and even hit another close to half court shot at the buzzer in the second quarter to give the Cavs a 59-35 lead. James was able to take much of the second half off, playing just 31 minutes total.
Mo Williams had 15 for the Cavs, Delonte West added 14. Anderson Varejao started strong, and had 12 points, giong 6-for-9 from the field. The team shot 53 percent, and was again better on the boards, out-rebounding the Hawks 43-34.
Atlanta also played without two of their bigger players, as they were without two starters center Al Horford and forward Marvin Williams, and during the game starter and leading scorer Joe Johnson rolled his right ankle in the third quarter and did not return, and may not be able to go Saturday for game three in Atlanta.
So for the Cavs, it was simply another night of going out and taking care of business. Expect to hear a lot more of Rick Astley before this playoff run is done.