Tim Rice (Tag The Shooter)/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

WASHINGTON — The Cleveland Cavaliers’ star player, too sick to play in the team’s last couple of games, felt good enough to perform on Sunday, yet the sickly performance put on by Donovan Mitchell and the rest of the Cavaliers for the majority of their game in the nation’s capital was enough to leave everyone around him queasy. Fortunately for them, Cleveland found the antidote in time to win a game it felt it should have won more comfortably.

Jarrett Allen had 22 points and 11 rebounds while Caris LeVert came off the bench and was just two assists shy of a triple-double as the Cavaliers used a late fourth-quarter run to defeat the Washington Wizards 114-105 inside Capital One Arena on Sunday.

Mitchell, who missed the Cavaliers’ first two games after the All-Star Break due to an illness, returned to the lineup and scored 16 points, but it was backcourt mate Darius Garland who scored 10 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter as Cleveland went on a 22-4 run in the final stanza to finally overtake Washington for good and end a two-game losing streak.

“I thought we defended well when we needed to,” Cleveland coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. “We just need to be better. I don’t think we played to our standard tonight. I expected more fire from our group after losing two games in a row and having the opportunity to play another one.”

LeVert had seven points in the fourth and ended the game with 18 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists in 28 minutes off the bench.

Jordan Poole scored 31 points off the bench for the Wizards, who have now lost 11 straight and are 2-12 under interim head coach Brian Keefe. Kyle Kuzma had 27 points, 14 coming in the first quarter.

“Credit to our guys to keep battling and showing the resilience that we want to see out of them,” Keefe said. “I thought Jordan and Kyle were really stepping up, pushing us.”

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Sunday evening, with all photos taken by DC-area photographer Tim Rice. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 15 pictures in total.

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Tags : Cleveland CavaliersNational Basketball AssociationWashington Wizards

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