Preview: Cavs start trip with Finals rematch

Sam Amico

AmicoHoops

First meeting of season with Warriors tips off four-game road swing for rolling Cavaliers.

Cavaliers (19-7) vs. Warriors (27-1)

SITE: Oracle Arena, Oakland, Calif.

TIPOFF: 5 p.m. EST

TV: ABC

RADIO: Cavaliers Radio Network, WTAM 1100-AM (Flagship)

PROJECTED STARTERS

Cavaliers: C Timofey Mozgov; PF Kevin Love; SF LeBron James; SG J.R. Smith; PG Kyrie Irving.

Warriors: C Andrew Bogut; PF Draymond Green; SF Brandon Rush; SG Klay Thompson; PG Steph Curry.

INJURY REPORT

Cavaliers: None to report.

Warriors: SF Harrison Barnes (ankle) out.

NOTES/THOUGHTS

Pretty much everything that can be said about this game has been discussed or written already. That includes several stories and videos on this very website. … Some players, fans and reporters are viewing this as "just one of 82." Then there are others, who say this is a "statement game" or "measuring stick" for both teams. … The best approach is probably somewhere in between. … As you may know, Warriors starting small forward Harrison Barnes is out with a sprained ankle. … But let's be honest, they have more than enough to overcome it. … Meanwhile, the Cavs are just sort of finding their rhythm all over again, as everyone was healthy for the first time all season vs. the Knicks on Tuesday. … Kyrie Irving, understandably, remains a little rusty. Cavs coach David Blatt does indeed plan to keep Irving on a minutes restriction. … The teams meet again Jan. 18 in Cleveland. So let's not get too carried away with the result of this one. … The Cavs have won six straight, the second-longest active streak in the league behind the Spurs, who have won seven straight. … As an aside, the Cavs are also 1-0 lifetime vs. the Warriors when Irving, LeBron James and Kevin Love are all in the lineup. … They have outscored opponents by an average of 14.1 points during the streak. ... I'm not so sure the Cavs will win this one. But I am sure that, either way, it isn't that big of a deal. … Warriors guard Steph Curry is averaging a whopping 31.8 points. That's simply remarkable for a guard who isn't really built like an NBA superstar. Shows you what dedication to your craft can do. … This is the first of four straight games for the Cavs out West. When everyone was healthy, they fared well on a similar trip last season.

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