The infamous return to Cleveland for Lebron has proved significant for both The Heat and The Cavaliers. It was the second game of what is now an eight game losing streak for Cleveland, who were 7-9 at the beginning of that streak. It was also the third game of what is now a nine game win streak for Miami. Miami was 9-9 before that streak began.
So, why have these teams changed from middle of the pack teams to a bottom team and a top team after this match-up? The Heat have won by an average of 16.9 points per game and The Cavs have lost by an average of 20 points per game since their streaks have started. Many have noticed that the Heat's Big Three have been playing a lot better recently, in the last four games averaging 75 points per game together, and turning the ball over a lot less. Before the Cavs game the big three had more turnovers than assists combined, now they are averaging 1.5 assists per turnover. Lebron has the highest efficiency rating with 1.97 assists per turnover, and Dwayne Wade has the lowest with 1.25 assists per turnover.
Meanwhile, The Cavaliers haven't been able to figure a lot out. Right now they are putting almost the entire team on the trade block, including Power Forward J.J Hickson, who Danny Ferry refused to trade at the trade deadline last year. Since the Heat game they have only ended the game within 10 points of their opponent once, and that was against The Chicago Bulls (88-83).
So, what does this all point to with The Cavaliers heading to Miami on Wednesday to play the Heat? It means that The Cavs need to correct everything that fell apart in their last game versus Miami on December 2. They need to move the ball, turnover less, and most importantly they need to shoot better. The Cavs have averaged .401% from the field and only 89.9 points per game in December, where they have yet to win a game (0-7). Before that they were averaging 94.1 points per game and .437% shooting from the field.
Not that Cleveland has to beat The Heat on Wednesday, but they should at least try to compete with the team and maybe show Lebron a bit of the cold shoulder instead of talking to him every time he's near our bench.