Cavs/Heat first half notes: LeBron gets booed, can still ball
Some notes from the first half of LeBron James’ return to Cleveland, where the Heat are blowing out the Cavs 59-40 at the half:
• Oh, he got booed. When LeBron came out for pregame warmups he was greeted by very loud boos, followed by a chant of “a—hole.”
• One fan was ejected for running up, pointing and screaming in LeBron’s face as they came out of the tunnel for warmups, according to the Akron Becon Journal.
• For contrast Zydrunas Ilgauskas got a very loud ovation during pregame introductions.
• Interestingly, Cleveland wearing white home uniforms, Cavs in wine colored road jerseys.
• Everyone in the building said the game had the energy of a big postseason game. Well, at least at the start.
• LeBron did the powder toss, the chorus of boos bot even louder.
• There didn’t seem to be a lot of creative signs shown on the TNT broadcast, but my favorite seen in a tweet was “Akron Hates You Too!”
• As expected every time he touched the ball LeBron was booed. The Cavaliers hung with the Heat for a little while, starting with a real burst of adrenalin. That wore off, by the way.
• The Heat started the game in that very stagnant offense again, allowing Cavs to overload on LeBron and other ballhandlers. The Cavs then seem just happy to settle. Eventually they started to attack and do better against the Cavs defense, but could they do that against a better team?
• In the first quarter the “de-lon-te” chants start. Some other profane chants were mixed in. There was some creative stuff on the Internet but little if any seems to have made is way into the arena.
• James has 10 first quarter points on 4 of 8 shooting, and played the entire quarter. Two of those points came on a very impressive up and under.
• Heat shot 54 percent, (59 percent eFG) in the first quarter, 52.4 percent and 5 of 11 from three for the half. They also got to the line more,
• Things just got worse for the Cavaliers as the game went on and the limitations of what is left on their roster were exposed. The Cavs shot 28.9 percent for the half.
• LeBron James spent a lot of the breaks in play joking around with his former teammates on the Cavaliers bench — while the fans in Cleveland hate LeBron, the players apparently do not. By the way, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert sits right behind the Cavaliers bench, so this really has to grate on him.