Bobcats-Cavaliers Preview

The Associated Press

The Cleveland Cavaliers expect to be without Kyrie Irving for at least the next two games, but his absence has been Lester Hudson's gain.

The Cavaliers will try to end a six-game skid at home Tuesday night when they take on the league-worst Charlotte Bobcats, losers of 12 in a row.

Cleveland (18-36) has lost 10 of 11 as injuries have taken their toll. Irving (shoulder) has missed four of the Cavaliers' last five games while Daniel Gibson (torn foot tendon) has been out since March 19 and Anthony Parker (bruised sternum) has missed the last two games.

Hudson has provided Cleveland with a lift the past two contests. Averaging 12.7 points in six games since being signed to a 10-day contract last month, Hudson had 23 in a win over Toronto on Friday and a career-high 26 in a 122-117 overtime loss to New Jersey on Sunday.

"He's been fantastic," coach Byron Scott said. "I'm just happy for him because he's playing so hard he's a good kid, and he gave us a chance again tonight."

With Irving expected to sit out at least another two games, Cleveland signed Hudson to a second 10-day contract Monday.

"It's an opportunity for me," Hudson said. "That's all I can say. I want to make the best out of it and keep going and play hard and try to help my team win."

Despite the Cavaliers' struggles, they won both of their games against the lowly Bobcats in January. Antawn Jamison, who scored a season-high 34 points against the Nets, had 20 in a 102-94 victory against them on Jan. 16.

While Cleveland earned the No. 1 pick last season, Charlotte (7-48) seems to have the greatest chance this year.

The Bobcats lost their 12th straight, falling 113-85 to Washington on Monday.

In a matchup between the NBA's worst teams, Charlotte shot 39.0 percent, allowed the Wizards to hit 11 3-pointers and trailed by as many as 32 points en route to their third loss in four games by at least 20 points.

Corey Maggette scored 23 points and Kemba Walker added 16 for the Bobcats, who were without D.J. Augustin (knee), Eduardo Najera (fractured frontal bone) and Reggie Williams (knee).

''We knew it was going to be an effort game,'' Stephen Silas, who substituted again for father Paul as head coach, said. ''Throughout the game I told the guys that if we were going to win this game we were going to have to do all of the things we practiced and all of the things we work on every day. We didn't do those things and as a result we lost. It's something we have to learn from.''

Charlotte has to win three of its final 11 games to reach the 10-win plateau.

The young Bobcats have been plagued by defensive breakdowns recently, giving up at least 110 points in four of their last six games.

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