The Great, Not So Great, & Bottom Line of Cavs’ loss to Bucks

The Cleveland Cavaliers(12-7) began their three-game road trip in Milwaukee against the Bucks(13-5), and as they did earlier in the season in Milwaukee, the Cavs fell to the Bucks 117-102, which snapped Cleveland’s four-game winning streak. 

Here’s the Great, Not So Great, and the Bottom Line of the Cavs’ loss to the Bucks.

Great: 

First Half Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland: Mitchell had 21 of his team-high 29 points for the Cavs in the first half, and Garland added 17 of his 20 points for the Cavs in the first half. The two combined for 38 of the team’s 63 first-half points, but like the rest of the group, the two struggled in the second half. Mitchell was 8/15 from the floor, while Garland was 6/11 in the first half. However, in the second half, Micthell was 3/9, while Garland was 1/7 from the field.

Not So Great:

Third Quarter: Cleveland led 63-52 at the break and led by as many as 16 points, but the third quarter turned everything around for the Bucks. Milwaukee outscored the Cavs 35-10 in the third. Giannis Antetokounmpo had nine of his game-high 38 points in the quarter. The Cavs shot an abysmal 17% from the field, while the Bucks shot 58%, including 5/6 from deep. A 16-point first-half lead for Cleveland turned into a 14-point deficit as the Bucks led 87-73 at the end three, and the game was essentially over.

In their two wins over the Cavs this season, Milwaukee has outscored Cleveland 69-28 in the third.

Bottom Line

Cleveland got the start they wanted, but unfortunately, they did not get the third quarter they wanted, and ultimately, they didn’t get the win. The Bucks blitzed them, and the Cavs did not respond as their road struggles continued. Cleveland is now 4-6 on the road.

What’s Next:

The Cavs head to Detroit to battle the Pistons on Sunday.

Best of the Rest:

-Jarrett Allen injured his hip after a scary fall in the first quarter. Allen went for an Antetokounmpo pump fake and fell over him. He would return. However, he only played four minutes in the second half.

-Lamar Stevens missed Friday’s game due to illness. Dean Wade stepped in for Stevens and had seven points and 12 rebounds.

-Caris LeVert missed his third straight game with an ankle injury; Kevin Love(thumb) missed his second consecutive game.

-Jevon Carter had 18 points, including five threes for Milwaukee: Along with his 38 points(22 in the first half), Antetokounmpo added nine rebounds, six assists, and two blocks.

Giants-Cowboys most-watched NFL game in league history

Thanksgiving and football are perfect together. On Friday, the NFL announced that the Giants-Cowboys showdown was the most-watched NFL regular season game in league history.

The late afternoon game on FOX between the Giants and Cowboys averaged 42.0 million viewers(TV+Digital).

According to the league, The total unduplicated audience across all three games – Buffalo Bills vs. Detroit Lions, New York Giants vs. Dallas Cowboys and New England Patriots vs. Minnesota Vikings – was 138 million – the highest Thanksgiving total audience on record. The 138 million total unduplicated audience number surpasses the previous high of 126 million in 2016 and is up +34% vs. 2021 (103 million).

The average viewership (TV+Digital) across the three games was 33.5 million – the highest Thanksgiving Day NFL average on record. The 33.5 million average viewers surpass the previous high of 32.9 million in 1993 (two games) and is up +6% vs. 2021 (31.6 million).

Charles Conwell wants Danny Garcia

Charles Conwell would jump at the chance to fight Danny Garcia if it opened the door for a world title shot in 2023.

‘Bad News’ faces the experienced Juan Carlos Abreu in California on Saturday night, in a semi-final eliminator for the WBC world super welterweight title.

The unbeaten Conwell, who is ranked No5 by the sanctioning body, knows he could be just two wins away from landing a shot at the belt, which is currently held by Jermell Charlo.

Sitting above the American in the ratings are fighters including Sebastien Fundora, Liam Smith and former two-weight world champion Garcia.

And 2016 Olympian Conwell says he would be happy to face any of those names in a final eliminator – especially Garcia – to keep him on track for ‘superstardom’.

“Those are the types of fights I want,” Conwell told Probellum.com.

“I want those ex-world champions, people with experience who have been there before, who’ve done it. And I know Danny Garcia’s a great champion, he’s done his thing at two different weight classes, at 140 and 147 and now he’s bringing his skills up to 154.

“But I feel like it’s a new time and a new era. A lot of young fighters out there are starting to pop out, around my age group. It’s the right time for me to be the next superstar of the super welterweight division and if Danny Garcia is the name I need on my record, then I’ll go there and take that.”

But 25-year-old Conwell(17-0, 13 KOs) insists his focus is on Abreu, whom he meets at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson this weekend, on the undercard of the Jose Zepeda vs Regis Prograis world title clash.

“Saturday night, I’m going to leave the ring with a new record of 18-0 with 14 knockouts,” Conwell declared.

“Just know that I’m going to bring the action. I’m looking to finish this fight in style. No boxing, no dancing around, I’m looking to go out there and dominate every round. For however long it lasts.

“I possess the speed, the skill, the power, the slickness and everything else that I need to win and get the knockout. It’s just a matter of when.

“I’m looking to put on the best performance of my career so far and really going out there and making a statement. I can’t allow this to be fight close; I must dominate every round and make sure that when people talk about the super welterweight division that my name is brought up and brought up as one of the best too.”

Giants’ Barkley: ‘When the running game is not working, it starts with the running back’

After the 30 minutes, the New York Giants were playing well against the DallasCowboys on Thursday and had a 13-7 lead at the break, but an NFL game is 60 minutes, and the second half was all Dallas.

The Cowboys scored on three straight possessions in the second half and dominated the Giants. Ultimately, they would defeat New York 28-20 at AT&T Stadium to sweep the season series.

New York(7-4) has now lost two straight and three out of their last four. The theme of the last two games is their inability to run the ball. Last Sunday, the Lions held Saquon Barkley to 22 yards on 15 carries, and it wasn’t much better on Thursday, as Barkley had only 39 yards on 11 carries and a touchdown. If New York is not running the ball at a high level, more than likely, they will lose. The Giants have been held to under one hundred yards in their last three losses. Due to injuries and quarterback play, New York is not built to throw the ball a bunch of times. They need their running game, and that running game is just not getting it done right now.

“We’ve been missing some bigger plays that usually help in the run game,” Giants coach Brian Daboll said after the loss. “We just haven’t popped through there. The blocking, the running, the design, we have to do a better job all the way around with the run game. Coaching it, executing it.” 

Barkley says it’s on him.

“When the running game is not working, it starts with the running back,” Barkley said. “I’ve got to be better.” 

It all starts upfront, and the Giants are banged up on the offensive line. Three of the team’s five starters on the offensive line were out against the Cowboys.

The running game is on everybody; the coaches, offensive line, and running backs, but again it has to be better if New York hopes to finish the season strong. Barring a late-season collapse, the Giants still should make the playoffs. However, this is not the most talented team to begin with, so they have little margin of error.

They hope to regroup and be better against the Commanders next Sunday.

Simmons: ‘I feel like I’m in a good place’

Ben Simmons returned to Philadelphia for the first time as an active player on Tuesday night, and it appeared it would be an easy night for the Nets as the 76ers were without Joel Embiid, James Harden, and Tyrese Maxey, who were all out due to injuries.

However, Tobias Harris had a game and season-high 24 points, De’Anthony Melton added 22 points, including a career-high tying six threes, and Paul Reed chipped in with season-highs of 19 points and 10 rebounds off the bench as the 76ers defeated the Nets 115-106 at Wells Fargo Center.

Back to Simmons, who had a tremendous all-around game with 11 points, seven rebounds, 11 assists, three steals, and three blocks, he was booed during introductions, and he was booed every time he touched the ball. Last season, he came to Philly as a member of the Nets as he was dealt to Brooklyn before last season’s trade deadline, but he was a spectator due to injury. Throughout that game, he was booed heavily. However, it was not as bad this time.

“I thought it was going to be louder,” Simmons said after the loss.

We all expected more from the Philly faithful, but with Embiid, Harden, and Maxey out, the fans probably did not think Philadelphia had much chance, which may have impacted the crowd’s energy.

The number one overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft has played well in the last three games as he’s averaging 16 points, 7.6 assists, and 9.3 rebounds per contest, and according to him, he’s in a good place.

“I feel like I’m in a good place to come in here and just play basketball,” Simmons said. “I’m happy. I’m doing what I love, so being able to be out there and experience it was amazing. Obviously, we did not get the result that we wanted. It’s frustrating to lose a game like that, but I think it’s a great step forward.”

Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving liked how Simmons handled his return to Philadelphia.

He [Ben Simmons] did pretty good to me,” Durant, who had 20 points, said. “You never know how he really feels about it; you know what I’m saying? Unless you ask him, but he looked solid to me.”

Irving, who had a team-high 23 points, added: “I think he (Ben Simmons) did well. Obviously, we wanted to focus on our team win, but the crowd is not going anywhere, so it’s good to hear their loud voices, hear their boos, and next time hopefully, that motivates us to go out there and get that win a little bit more. We had the lead earlier in the first half, and then we gave it up, so think he did well.”

It appears Simmons is in a better place mentally and physically, and maybe the time away has humbled him, which is always a good thing. In the end, he’s cleared another hurdle. 

Heavyweight Jermaine Franklin on fight with Whyte: ‘I’m here to spoil his party’

Undefeated heavyweight contender Jermaine Franklin sent a stern warning to Dillian Whyte as he looks to stamp his credentials as a future world champion in their headlining clash this Saturday night taking place at Wembley Arena in London and streaming live on DAZN.

“This is my chance to show that I can go toe-to-toe with any heavyweight in the world,” said Franklin, who owns a perfect 21-0 record with 14 knockouts. “I’ve had a great training camp and I’m super motivated to be in the U.K. and win on my opponent’s home turf. I’m coming to finish him, so he better not be looking past me.”

Franklin has worked his way into heavyweight contention with 2019 triumphs over Rydell Booker, Jerry Forrest and Pavel Sour, before most recently stopping Rodney Moore in May. Saginaw, Michigan’s Franklin has been one of many fighters from Michigan, including women’s boxing superstar Claressa Shields. With a victory on Saturday night, Franklin’s promoter, Dmitriy Salita, believes he can solidify himself as one of the standouts from the area.

“Everybody knows that Jermaine has tremendous skill and heart, but they’re going to see him take it to another level against Dillian Whyte,” said Salita. “He’s been a big part of the comeback for boxing in Michigan and I truly believe that after Saturday night, he’s going to be one of the first guys you have to mention when talking about boxing in and around the area. The sky is the limit for him and I know that he’s doing everything possible to put on the best performance of his career in this fight.”

The 29-year-old Franklin will be looking to hand Whyte his second-straight loss after the London-resident dropped an April bout against WBC heavyweight titleholder Tyson Fury. Although Franklin has made it clear that his focus is squarely on Whyte, he and his promoter both know that a triumph on Saturday could lead to a blockbuster clash against another notable U.K. heavyweight, former two-time unified champion Anthony Joshua.

“I’ve never looked past any fighter and I’m not going to start with Dillian Whyte,” said Franklin. “I know that nothing I want happens unless I go in there and be the fighter that I know I am. Anthony Joshua is another big name and everyone knows that’s who Whyte wants next. But I’m here to spoil his party and step right in there to add Joshua’s name to my resume as well. No one can deny me my shot after that.”

Cyborg-Holloway added to Crawford-Avanesyan undercard

Legendary MMA superstar, Cris Cyborg, will be making her highly anticipated return to the boxing ring on December 10, when she battles Gabrielle Holloway on the Terence Crawford vs. David Avanesyan BLK Prime PPV showdown. Cyborg vs. Holloway, a scheduled 4-round bout in the lightweight division, will serve as a special feature attraction.

Crawford vs. Avanesyan, a 12-round WBO welterweight world title clash, will stream live on BLK Prime. The telecast will begin at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.

Cyborg, Ultimate Fighting’s only Grand Slam Champion, comes from a world-class mixed-martial-arts background. From Brazil, Cyborg makes her return to the boxing ring to continue her quest to establish herself as the greatest female fighter in any combat sport ever. In her boxing debut earlier this year, Cyborg defeated Simone Silva by a convincing unanimous decision – throwing clean right hands, pressing forward and unloading punches with Silva against the ropes. Her debut in the boxing ring established Cyborg as a looming championship contender, this next bout will prime her for that eventual opportunity.

“This is a great opportunity for me to make a splash in the boxing world, especially on a card with Terence Crawford, the best boxer in the world,” stated Cyborg, who will be making her USA debut in the squared circle. “Boxing has always been a big part of my training and I feel I can compete at the highest level. I’m expecting Holloway to be in great shape, and I know she’s coming to win. That said, I’m taking this fight very seriously. I feel confident, and I can’t wait to showcase my boxing skills to the world.”

Holloway also comes from an MMA background. Recently fighting in the Bellator system, she joins the undercard of Crawford vs Avanesyan to establish her place in boxing – taking on a universal women’s fighting icon in Cyborg.

“Looking forward to testing my skills against a legend in Combat sports, I’m coming fully prepared, conditioning is on point, we are going to steal the show, we are the real Main Event.” said Holloway.

Mitchell, Garland, Osman lead the Cavs over Hawks

The Cleveland Cavaliers(11-6) continued their four-game homestand on Monday night against the Atlanta Hawks(10-7).

Behind Donovan Mitchell, Darius Garland, and Cedi Osman, the Cavs defeated the Hawks 114-102 at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

With the win, Cleveland has now won three straight.

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

Great:

Cavs, again were led by the backcourt of Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland. The two combined for 55 points and 18 assists; Mitchell and Garland both had nine assists. Mitchell had 29 points and Garland had 26. We knew this would be a prolific backcourt and two guys that would be tough to stop, and they were tough to stop on Monday night.

Cedi Osman scored a season-high 23 points off the bench on 8-for-10 shooting. Osman has been so good off the bench this season, and that continued against the Hawks. In the fourth, with the Cavs up six with just over four minutes left, Osman hit two free throws after a clear path foul was called on John Collins, and on the same possession, Osman would hit a dagger three to put the Cavs up 11. 

Second-Half Defense: The Hawks shot 38 percent from the floor in the second half. Atlanta is in the top 10 in scoring, and the Cavs held them to 102 points. In addition, 10 of the Hawks’ 17 turnovers came in the second half. 

Not So Great:

You can point to the turnovers. Cleveland tied a season-high with 20 turnovers on Monday night, and Garland was the biggest culprit with eight. 

Bottom Line:

After losing five straight, Cleveland has righted their ship at home, and they are bringing the defensive energy that makes them go. They held the Hawks to 102 points on Monday and the Heat to 87 on Sunday night.

At this point, Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is a home-court advantage for the Cavs. They are 7-1 at home but have to be better on the road(4=5), and after this homestand, they will have three straight on the road.

What’s Next:

Cleveland concludes their four-game homestand on Wednesday night against the Blazers.

Best of the Rest:

Evan Mobley had 10 points, nine rebounds, and three assists; Jarrett Allen added eight points and 11 rebounds. 

Trae Young led the Hawks with 25 points and 10 assists; Onyeka Okongwu had 18 points and 10 rebounds off the bench.

Cleveland was without Caris LeVert on Monday night, who missed his first game of the season with an ankle injury.

Teofimo Lopez to battle Sandor Martin on December 10

Junior welterweight contender Teofimo Lopez will have a new “Heisman Night” foe. Jose “Sniper” Pedraza contracted a non-COVID-related illness, and Lopez will now face former European champion Sandor Martin on Saturday, Dec. 10, at Madison Square Garden.

Lopez-Martin, scheduled for 10 rounds, is a final eliminator for the WBC world title.

Brooklyn native Lopez (17-1, 13 KOs), the former lightweight king, made his junior welterweight debut in August with a seventh-round stoppage over Pedro Campa. He hopes to become a two-weight world champion in 2023, but the WBO No. 1 junior welterweight contender must first defeat the slippery Spanish southpaw. Martin (40-2, 13 KOs), who hails from Barcelona, authored the 2021 Upset of the Year when he stunned Mikey Garcia by majority decision and sent the four-weight world champion into retirement. Martin, ranked in the top 15 by all four major sanctioning organizations, followed up the Garcia triumph with a 10-round unanimous decision over Jose Felix in April.

“We wish Jose Pedraza a speedy recovery, but we look forward to facing Sandor Martin. He was the opponent we originally wanted for Heisman Night at Madison Square Garden,” Lopez said. “I will continue to silence the doubters as I take over the 140-pound division. I look forward to giving my hometown fans a special night of boxing.”

Martin said, “I’ve dreamed of fighting in a main event at Madison Square Garden. This is my time. I’ve taken the risk, and I will take control against Teofimo Lopez on December 10th. I will give the fans what they want to see.”

Lopez-Martin tops a televised quadruple-header airing immediately after the Heisman Trophy Ceremony at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+. Heavyweight sensation Jared “The Real Big Baby” Anderson aims for his 13th straight knockout against the battle-tested Jerry “Slugger” Forrest, Puerto Rican junior middleweight star Xander Zayas steps up in class against 28-fight veteran Alexis Salazar, and 2020 Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis looks to jumpstart his world title ambitions in a lightweight duel versus Juan Carlos Burgos.

Giants’ Robinson out for season with torn ACL

The New York Giants got terrible news on Monday as it was revealed that rookie wide receiver Wan’Dale Robinson would miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL. Robinson, who was placed on injured reserve, injured his knee in the fourth quarter of the team’s 31-18 loss to the Lions at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. 

The second-round pick in this year’s draft had nine receptions for 100 yards, all career highs against the Lions.

New York has had many injuries in the wide receiver room this season.. Robinson joins Sterling Shepard as wideouts the Giants have lost due to torn ACLs. In training camp, they lost Collin Johnson to a ruptured Achilles tendon. It’s been a struggle for New York this season, as nine different wide receivers have caught passes for the Giants.

It’s going to be a short week for New York as they travel to battle the Cowboys on the road, so New York will have to figure out what to do next.

“We have plenty of receivers on the roster,” Daboll said. “So, it’s a short week. We’ll get the guys ready to go, and we’ll revisit things like we always do each week and see where it goes.”

Robinson ends his rookie season with 23 catches for 227 yards and a touchdown.

With the latest injury, it should be interesting to see how much New York will pursue former Giant and free agent wideout Odell Beckham Jr., who reportedly will start visiting teams and could make a decision about where he will go next after the Thanksgiving holiday. For now, New York will have to work with what they have, and maybe Kenny Golladay can step up and be productive in the team’s final seven games. Here’s one thing for sure, it would definitely help