Cleveland Cavaliers Can Ill-Afford Slow Starts in Series with Bulls

I’m not sure if you forgot, but the Cleveland Cavaliers are still in the NBA Playoffs.

It would be completely understandable if this slipped your mind, seeing as the Cavs haven’t taken the court since completing their first-round sweep of the Boston Celtics on April 26. Since then, Cleveland has been patiently waiting for their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup, while also working on game-planning around the losses of Kevin Love (out for the year) and J.R. Smith (suspended two games).

Now, after a week-long hiatus, the Cavs are finally back in action, opening up their series with the Chicago Bulls tonight. Many see Chicago as the one Eastern Conference team who could keep Cleveland away from the NBA Finals, and with Love and Smith out tonight, such speculation is certainly increased.

It’ll clearly be a tough series for the Cavs, one which will no doubt provide a much bigger test than their bout with Boston. There are numerous things Cleveland needs to do if it wants to keep the postseason dreams alive. One of the biggest, though, is pretty simple: the Cavs cannot get off to the slow starts we saw in their series with the Celtics.

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