Cavs win third straight defeating the Magic 103-92 
            BY TIM SHIRER
(CLEVELAND, OH) - The Cleveland Cavaliers entered Wednesday night’s game at 2-1 after a thrilling overtime 117-107 win over the Washington Wizards on Sunday night at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse. The Orlando Magic came to town in search of their first win of the 2022-23 season with a record of 0-4. The Cavs took care of business and did what was expected as they played their normal team basketball securing a 103-92 win and improving to 3-1 on the year.

In a game that was closer early than expected the Cavs trailed the Magic 12-9 with 7:19 left in the first quarter when Wendell Carter, Jr. hit a fadeaway jumper. The lead did not last long, just twenty second later the Cleveland tied the score 12-12 when Caris LeVert drained a three-point basket with 6:59 left on the first quarter clock. The Magic regained the lead at 14-13 with 5:10 left in the first when Carter, Jr. hit two free throws after he was fouled by Kevin Love. The Cavs retook the lead at 15-14 when Jarrett Allen cut through the paint and emphatically slammed the ball home with 4:56 on the clock. Cleveland never trailed again in the quarter extending the lead to 30-24 when the buzzer sounded end the first quarter of play.

Cavs Cedi Osman and Orlando’s rookie big man Pablo Banchero led all scorers in the first quarter with eight points each. Donovan Mitchell and LeVert led the Cavs with three assists as the team had eight total. Banchero and Cole Anthony each had two of the six total for the Magic. The Magic outdid the Cavs on the boards 12-11. The Magic turned the ball over five times and that resulted in seven points for the Cavaliers. The Cavs turned the ball over three times resulting in three Orlando points.

The young Orland team made it clear early they were not going to just roll over for the Cavs. With 3:33 left on the clock in the second quarter the Magic led by Franz Wagner tied the game at 46-46 when Anthony drove the lane and put the ball in the basket. Orlando however could not take the lead as Cleveland outscored them 8-4 in the last 3:32 of the quarter to take a 54-50 lead into the halftime break. Wagner led all scorers with 14 points in the first half. Osman led the Cavs with 10 followed by Dean Wade with nine. The Cavs finished the first half with 15 assists while the Magic had just 11. However, Orlando outdid the Cavs on the glass 20-18. Orlando turned the ball over nine times resulting 16 Cavs points. The Magic capitalized on 8 Cavs turnovers resulting in 10 points.

The third quarter began at a sluggish pace as neither team scored until the Wagner drained a layup off the glass with 10:15 left on the clock cutting the Cavs lead to 54-52. The Cavs scored the next five when LeVert hit a three and Evan Mobley rebounded his own missed layup and put it in the cylinder to give the Cavs a 59-52 lead with 8:36 remaining in the third quarter. The Cavs extended the lead even further to 63-54 when Allen floated the ball on a hook shot to the rim it rolled around and in with 6:41 left in the third. 1:47 later Allen slammed the ball home with force after getting a couple fouls giving the Cavs a 65-56 lead. Mobley caught fire late in the third quarter slamming home a dunk and then :34 seconds later with 2:52 left hit a jumper from the outside giving the Cavs a 71-60 lead. The Magic continued their tough plays as they outscored the Cavs 9-2 in the final 2:52 cutting the Cavs lead to 73-69 after three quarters. Mobley led everyone in scoring in the quarter with eight points. Bol Bol led the Magic with five points. Both teams turned the ball over three times resulting in two points apiece. The Cavs outworked the Magic on the boards 12-10 to even the game total 30 boards for each club.

Mobley continued his hot hand to start the fourth as he slammed home an alley oop from Osman to increase the Cabs lead to 75-69 :34 into the fourth quarter. Rookie of the year candidate Banchero then came to the other end and splashed a three-pointer cutting the lead to just three at 75-72 with 11:01 left. The Osman to Mobley connection continued on the next series as Osman hit Mobley who once again slammed the ball home putting the Cavs up five with 10:42 left, Mobley was then fouled and hit one of two giving the Cavs a 78-72 lead with 9:59 left and all five Cavs points at this point in the fourth quarter belong to Mobley. Wade then said enough Mobley and with 8:58 left gave the Cavs a seven-point lead at 81-74 when he drained a three pointer. The young fighting Magic responded with a three of their own by Banchero to cut the lead to 81-77 at the 8:41 mark of the 4th quarter. The Cavs went on a 6-0 run which included a successful challenge by JB Bickerstaff on LeVert giving the Cavs a 10-point lead with 7:02 left in the game. Unlike the Wizards who are without a doubt a better team than the Magic the Cavs were able to put the Magic away in the final minutes of the game. Outscoring them 22-15 in the final 8:40 to secure the win. Two things that seemed very apparent about Banchero is he is very talented and will be a force in the league but seems to get a little bothered when things don’t go his way. The second showed up late in the game. Mobley scored nine more points in the final quarter to lead the Cavs with 20. Allen had 18 for the Cavs and also led everyone in the game in rebounds with 16. Mitchell had his worst night in the scoring column as a Cavs as he tallied 14 in the contest. Banchero led the Magic in the losing effort with 29 and Wagner had 22.

The Magic outrebounded the Cavs 20-18 in the first half were outrebounded by the Cavs 25-22 in the second half as Cleveland won the battle of the boards 43-42. The Cavs bench also outperformed the Magic in the game, outscoring them 27-13.

The Cavaliers will have their biggest test of the early season in Boston on Friday night at 7:30 pm at TD Garden when they take on the Celtics who are also 3-1. The Magic will also be in action on Friday at their home in the Amway Arena as they host the Charlotte Hornets at 7 pm.. 
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​POSTED 10/26/2022 22:08
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Lake County Sentinel
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Cavaliers center Evan Mobley.             Photo by Tommy Shirer