It didn’t take long for the Charlotte Bobcats to match last
season’s win total, but they never recovered from a lengthy losing
Still, a late-season push could help them avoid the league’s
Charlotte goes for a season high-tying third straight victory in
Wednesday night’s season finale against a visiting Cleveland
Cavaliers team that could be playing its last game under coach
With a 7-5 start under first-year coach Mike Dunlap, the Bobcats
took a little more than three weeks to equal their victory total
from a season ago when they finished 7-59 for the worst winning
percentage (.106) in NBA history.
Charlotte (20-61), though, dropped its next 18 – eight fewer
than Cleveland’s league-record 26-game skid two seasons ago.
The Bobcats will miss the playoffs for a third consecutive
season, but they have an opportunity to leapfrog Orlando and escape
the NBA cellar. The teams are tied for the worst record, with the
Magic closing at Miami on Wednesday.
“We want to take care of that,” guard Gerald Henderson said
after scoring a team-best 27 points in Monday’s 106-95 victory over
New York. “It’s not been one of our goals to start the season,
obviously, but it’s become a smaller goal for us as we’ve come down
Charlotte has been playing well at home over the last month,
winning seven of nine following back-to-back victories over
Milwaukee and the Knicks. The Bobcats won a season-best three
straight overall Nov. 10-14.
The Cavaliers (24-57), meanwhile, arrive in Charlotte following
a fifth straight defeat and 15th in 17 games, 96-95 to the Heat on
Monday. It was a far better effort than Sunday’s 91-77 loss at
Philadelphia, but Scott still sounded like a defeated man.
“I’m fatigued, mentally, physically, a little bit of
everything,” he said. “But I still wake up every morning ready for
There’s a chance Scott won’t be doing that much longer for the
Cavs, even though he’s under contract for next season, which would
be his fourth with the team.
“I am going to be back to coach them,” he said. “I’ve got a year
left on my contract, so unless I’m told different, I expect to do
Expectations were high on Kyrie Irving, last season’s Rookie of
the Year, but the Cavs’ injury-plagued point guard has played just
58 games and been inconsistent at times. Of his past nine games,
he’s scored at least 27 points four times but averaged 11.2 in the
Irving has keyed Cleveland winning both meetings with Charlotte
this season, scoring 33 in a 106-104 victory at Charlotte on Jan. 4
and finishing with 22 in a 122-95 home win Feb. 6. That was the
Cavs’ sixth straight win in the series and most lopsided since
LeBron James left for Miami.