While giving up 129 points in regulation play.
The Cavs played one of their best games of the season against the Raptors. Their starting 5 in double-figures. Kevin Love with a double-double after a lengthy absence. LeBron James resumes his dominance.
They look like they are peaking at the right time...dan-ger-ous for the rest of the East.
They won by 3 points despite Lebron going off, Hill shooting 10-for-11, and Hill / Calderon / Love / Green shooting 12-for-16 from deep.
If the Cavs are giving up 120+ points a game in the playoffs, they are losing the vast, vast, vast majority of those games. The Cavs defense is awful and I don't see them throwing the switch and suddenly holding teams to 100 ppg in the playoffs.
This isn't the same team of the last three years. Lebron defensively is not the same player. Clarkson, Nance, Osman have no playoff experience. Smith and Thompson seem shells of their former selves. Hill is no Kyrie and lord knows if Love is going to be Minnesota Love, Cleveland 2016 Love or I am injured AND have anxiety problems Love.
They have better individual defenders this year then they did last year and they entered last year playing as a bottom 3 defense for the entire second half of the year before turning it on in the playoffs and finishing as a top 3 defense in the playoffs. Obviously, they will miss Irving's scoring and ability to take games over, but Hill is a better defender and better 3 point shooter than Irving (Irving is obviously a much much better player). Instead of Smith, Shumpert, and Deron Williams, they will have Hood, Smith, and Clarkson, which is a much better 3 some on both ends of the floor. Korver is Korver and Thompson is Thompson, though Thompson will get far less minutes this year and will come off the bench rather than start. They will replace Frye and R. Jefferson with Green and Nance. They have guys like Osman and Zizic on the deep bench instead of Derrick Williams, James Jones, and Dahntay Jones.
In other words, defensively they have the potential to be far better then they were last year, when they were blowing teams out in the East and a top 3 defensive team in the playoffs.