Pelicans run out of gas in Cleveland; ending 5-game road trip in 113-103 loss
Darius Garland was the catalyst for the Cavs’ strong finish by scoring 11 of his total 30 points in the final quarter.
CLEVELAND (WVUE) - The Pelicans come away from their final game of a season-long five-game road trip (2-2 heading into this game) Monday (Jan. 16) afternoon with a 113-103 loss to the Cavs.
The Pels started hot behind big man Jonas Valanciunas who totaled 13 pts and 7 rebounds in the first half. However, they struggled to keep pace offensively against a Cavs team that has won five of their last 8 games without their two main stars Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson. Herb Jones was also a healthy scratch on Monday.
Cleveland opened the fourth quarter on a 15-0 run, the first seven points coming from the foul line. The Pels were able to make a small run down the stretch as Trey Murphy and C.J. McCollum hit a pair of 3-pointer to cut it down to 93-99 but Darius Garland answered with a 3-pointer of his own.
Garland was the catalyst for the Cavs’ strong finish by scoring 11 of his total 30 points in the final quarter.
“I keep telling our guys in the locker room that our margin for error is small,” Pelicans coach Willie Green said postgame. “We can’t allow teams to get on an 11-0 run and not rebound the ball.”
McCollum led the effort with 25 points and Valanciunas had a total of 22 points and 13 rebounds. The Pelicans, with a 26-18 overall record, are currently No. 3 in the Western Conference.
The Pelicans return home for a single game on Wednesday, hosting Miami, before going back out on the road to face Orlando and Miami again.
As the month of January begins to pass for the Pelicans, they are still waiting for their two top talents to return. Ingram had previously said that he hoped to return to action during the road trip that just concluded on Monday but he still remains out with a left big toe injury. While Ingram has participated in pregame shootarounds with the team, he still has yet to participate in one or two full practices, something Green said the star would likely have to do before a full return.
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