NBA Summer League: Cavaliers fall to Pelicans 66-62

The Cavaliers lost their first Summer League game Monday to the New Orleans Pelicans. The Cavs (2-1) were paced by Dion Waiters who had 16 points on 5-16 shooting. Tyler Zeller had 15 points and 12 rebounds. Jermaine Taylor (D-League) added 10 points and  was the only other Cavalier with more than 6.

The Cavaliers again started slow offensively again, but played decent defense down the stretch. In the third quarter, Cleveland held New Orleans to only 7 points. Unfortunately for Jamahl Mosely’s bunch, they were ice cold from the field. For the game the Cavaliers shot 37.5 percent. Dion Waiters was 1-6 in the final quarter.

The game was tied with a minute and a half left, but New Orleans’ Austin Rivers went right down the lane on consecutive possessions off of screens at the top of the lane. Perhaps that will be addressed in practice tomorrow.

Following the game, second round pick Carrick Felix wrote in his Summer League blog about his struggles to score-

“Right now, my shot’s not falling, but that’s OK. I just have to make sure I keep playing solid defense. I know I can shoot the three, I know I can play defense, and right now, that’s the biggest thing our team needs: defense and energy. So I’m just going to try to come out in the next couple games and bring that and see where it takes me.”

Felix was 2 for 8 on Monday and 2 for 7 on Sunday in the win against the Grizzlies. In the three games combined he is 9 for 24 and 2 for 8 from behind the three point line. He is a perfect 5 for 5 from the free throw line.

[Related: Cavaliers cruise to 11 point win over Grizzlies]

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    There’s something really embarrassing about losing to the “Pelicans”. The name makes the loss so much worse. I don’t know how the Cavs can even try anymore, after losing to the “Pelicans”. Maybe that was the plan behind the rebranding all along? Mind Games.

  • JHop

    My man crush on Dellavedova continues. In watching parts yesterday’s game, you could tell the Cavaliers are starting to feel the same way. Whenever guard play was looking poor, the coaches would instantly put him back in the game. Still showing lots of weaknesses, but the potential’s there.

  • BigDigg

    I know it’s summer league, but Dion Waiters continued poor shooting has to be worrying. Haven’t watched the games so not sure if he’s working on something specific or what the general shot selection looks like.

  • mgbode

    you are going to really hate it when players start doing “the pelican” after made 3pters then:


  • Vindictive_Pat

    I would say the opposite… it’s not alarming, it’s expected. The summer league is only 2 months after the conclusion of the regular season and it seems like most players take a couple of weeks for vacation and spending time with their families around then. I think Waiters is just knocking the rust off of his jump shot, as seemingly most players have struggled with their jump shots in the summer league. If his jump shot still looks ice cold by the end of the preseason, then I’d say there’s something to be concerned about.

  • TSR3000

    I kinda like the name. It is growing on me. Now the bobcats should turn into the Hornets.

  • mgbode
  • JHop

    And then the Jazz should their name to New Orleans. That would make more sense than anything.

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    Neither I, nor the Karate Kid, are impressed by “the Pelican”


  • woofersus

    After the second game Waiters basically said that he’s been working out, but not playing basketball thus far in the offseason, and that as a result his legs weren’t quite there in the game situation. I also think Waiters’ game suffers a bit from the poor spacing and iffy guard play when he’s off the ball in summer league. He commanded a lot of attention and there were a bunch of times when the defense collapsed on him and he passed it out to an open teammate who could not hit the shot.

  • mgbode

    well, that dude is stupid. it’s not a crane. pelicans spread their wings with both feet on the ground.


  • mgbode

    but, LA needs to keep the Laker moniker for the amount of lakes in SoCal is crazy.

  • mgbode

    also, speaking of nonsensical sport names, the Cavaliers definitely fit the bill here. Cleveland doesn’t even have a particularly large French contingent in demographics. It’d make more sense if we picked an Eastern European influenced name.

    I still prefer the Cleveland Carrs though (and rebrand the Indians to the Fellers). Embrace the history.

  • woofersus

    I continue to be impressed by Dellavedova. I continue to not be impressed by Higgins and Kadji. Felix’s offensive game is rough, but we knew that. His hustle and defense will probably get him some minutes this year. Scary moment when somebody inadvertently tripped Zeller when he was at a full run and he tumbled pretty good. (always looks worse when a 7-footer goes flying) He got right back up though, so at least one of our bigs isn’t brittle, lol.

  • Ben Frambaugh

    I was impressed with Waiters (overall) improved on court awareness. As others have stated, his shooting doesn’t bother me…though I do wish he was better at hitting his free throws. His shot form and selection did look a bit improved from where he ended last season (though it clearly still needs work.)
    Zeller looked stronger…but that could have just been because of weak competition. Hopefully he can play primarily as a backup this season…and really work on his game/confidence.
    I’m probably most excited for this Cleveland team than I am any of the others (though I’m not really a baseball fan, so I have no idea what the Indians are actually doing unless a local sports talk guy discusses them.)

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    I knew you were a guru in many sports-related areas, but I did not anticipate your expertise would extend to ornithology.

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    Cavalier was a term used to describe the Royalist supporters during the English Civil War. The French word would have been “Chevalier”. It means knight, or horseman.

    Still doesn’t make sense for Cleveland, though.

  • mgbode

    gotta love the brown pelican. they are fascinating to watch (vacation in Galveston a week each year and there are thousands of them there)

  • mgbode

    good to know. thanks. and, agreed.

  • Ben Frambaugh

    According to WM Dictionary
    1 : a gentleman trained in arms and horsemanship
    2 : a mounted soldier : knight
    3 capitalized: an adherent of Charles I of England
    4 : gallant
    Maybe you could say that they were going for a mix between #1 and #4?