Kevin Love broke NBA and franchise records in a stunning performance the last time the Cleveland Cavaliers held court in the NBA, but on Friday, the Dallas Mavericks will hope the Cavs forward has a quiet game as the two teams meet at the Quicken Loans Arena.
Love torched the Portland Trail Blazers for 34 points in just the first quarter, which included eight three-pointers, and broke an NBA record for the most points in an opener quarter. He eventually finished with 40 points for the night, as the Cavaliers ran-out 137-125 winners on Wednesday.
"It's definitely fun, especially when I saw after the fact the reactions of my teammates," Love said. "It was a lot of fun. We got in here after the game and they congratulated me.
"I didn't realize that was the most points for a first quarter or how close I was to the record for a quarter in general. It's definitely a lot of fun, but that's over and done with now. Enjoy it, enjoy Thanksgiving, but know that we have another game Friday."
What went unnoticed a little owing to Love's hot hand is that LeBron James finished the game with a triple-double, the 44th of his career, with the Cleveland superstar putting up 31 points, 13 assists and ten rebounds.
James, though, was more than happy to give the credit for the win to his teammate Love. "Obviously we had a huge hot hand," James said. "That was lightning. We just kept giving him the ball and he kept knocking them down."
That will be the plan for Friday as well, and the smart money will be on Cleveland cruising to victory, considering the Dallas Mavericks have the worst record in the league. At 2-12, the injury-hit Mavs have made a horrible start, and it showed no signs of getting better, after they went down heavily 124-104 in their last game to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The only positive from that game was the return of Dirk Nowitzki, who had previously missed eight games with an Achilles injury. "It was good to be out there again," Nowitzki, who scored ten points in 20 minutes of play, said. "My conditioning is lacking a little bit right now. I was a little tired out there, but at least my body felt fine, and that's all that matters."
Dallas will need a lot more from Nowitzki, if they are to make this NBA game against Cleveland even a contest.
Where to Watch Live
Dallas vs Cleveland is scheduled for a 7.30pm ET (12.30am GMT, 6am IST) start. Live Streamng and TV information below.
India: TV: Sony Six and Sony Six HD. Live Streaming: Sonyliv.
USA: Live Streaming: NBA League Pass.
UK: TV: BT Sport. Live Streaming: Watch BT Sport.
Australia and New Zealand: TV: ESPN.
International (including India): NBA Online.