The Cavaliers dropped a tough 94-92 decision at San Antonio on Monday night, but Cleveland coach Paul Silas was pleased with his team’s performance against the league-leading Spurs.
“We battled a championship team right down to the wire,” Silas said. “If we can continue to play like this, I’ll be satisfied. They’re a great team and they had to pull out everything to beat us.”
“I don’t know what’s up,” Cavs guard Jeff McInnis said. “For whatever reason, we’re playing like we’re in mud.”
Defense has been a major deficiency of late as Cleveland is allowing 101.1 points over its last three games after spending most of this season among the league leaders in scoring defense.
Breaking out of the slump won’t be easy. After Wednesday’s game with Seattle, the Cavs travel to Philadelphia on Friday and return home to face Eastern Conference-leading Miami on Sunday.
“We have been through a lot of ups and downs, but the main thing is that we don’t quit,” McInnis said. “Right now we’re going through some tough times so this really shows the character of this team. Everyone is jelling together and we’re going to work our way out of it.”
Seattle resumed its impressive road play with a 101-93 victory at Indiana on Tuesday. Rashard Lewis scored 30 points as the Sonics rebounded from a team record-low 29.4 percent shooting effort in a 99-73 loss to Milwaukee on Sunday.
“We were more focused than we were in the Milwaukee game,” Lewis said. “We just committed ourselves to getting back to playing our old way, and that’s playing NBA basketball the right way.”
The Sonics won for the seventh time in their last nine road games, and their eight losses away from KeyArena are the fewest in the NBA.