The Great, Not So Great, & Bottom Line of Cavs’ big win over Mavs

After a bad road loss to the Spurs on Monday, the Cavs(18-11) got back at it in Dallas against the Mavericks(14-14) on Wednesday night.

The Cavs played one of its better games of the season as they led the Mavs from start to finish and defeated them 105-90 at American Airlines Center.

Cleveland had six players in double figures, including all five starters, and with the win, the Cavs ended their three-game road losing streak.

Here’s the Great, Not So Great, and the Bottom Line of the Cavs’ big win over the Mavs.


Donovan Mitchell, who lost to the Mavs as a member of the Jazz in the first round of the playoffs last season, was on fire Wednesday night, especially in the first half, where he scored 27 points on 10/12 shooting, including 5/6 from deep. Mitchell finished the game with 34 points(13/20 FG, 6/9 3-pt FG).

Lamar Stevens was also big for the Cavs. He had a season-high 18 points and a career-high tying 11 rebounds. Stevens did it on both ends on Wednesday night as he helped limit Luka Doncic to 9/23 from the field. The last four times, including Wednesday, Stevens scored in double figures, the Cavs have won.

Second Quarter: This is where Mitchell and the Cavs took over the game. After leading by as many as 14 in the first quarter, the Mavs cut the lead to 34-30 in the second quarter. From there, the Cavs went on a 17-0 run to take a 21-point lead. Mitchell scored 10 of his 17 second-quarter points(6/6 FG. 5/5 3-PT FG) during that run.

Dallas cut the lead to nine in the third and fourth quarters, but they could not get any closer. The Cavs were in control after that 17-0 run.

Defense: Cleveland brought great defensive energy. They held the Mavs to 90 points on 39% shooting. The Mavs had a hard time scoring against the Cavs’ long frontline of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen.

Not So Great:

It’s hard to put anybody on this list, but Darius Garland would be the guy if we were. He was just 4/11 from the field and finished with 12 points and six assists. Garland continues to be an All-Star at home and is just okay on the road.

Bottom Line:

Great road win for the Cavs, and it was clear from the start that they were a different team than what we saw against the Spurs. 

This is how a good team responds, and the Cavs, despite their road struggles(6-9), are a good team. In addition, the Mavericks are an excellent home team(11-5), so winning in Dallas is not easy.

Now they head home for six games with an opportunity to put some wins together.

What’s Next:

The Cavs return home on Friday night to face the Indiana Pacers as they begin a six-game homestand.

Best of the Rest:

Mobley and Allen had 14 points apiece. Mobley added seven rebounds and six assists.

Cleveland has won 14 games by double-digits this season.

Doncic led the Mavericks with 30 points (10-11 FT), 5 rebounds and 6 assists tonight. Dončić passed Mark Aguirre (34 games, 11/22/83 – 2/1/84) for the franchise record in consecutive 20-point games with his 35th straight.

Junkyard Dog:

Stevens received the “Junkyard Dog” award for his performance against the Mavs.

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