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10 Takeaways From Cavs Dominating Loss to Timberwolves

The Cleveland Cavaliers were run out of Minnesota on Wednesday night by a Timberwolves team they had previously defeated. Ricky Rubio threw a bounce pass between Jarrett Jack's legs for one of his 16 assists while leading his team to a 124-95 victory. 

Rubio also added 16 points on seven field-goal attempts to go along with six rebounds. 

Kevin Love, meanwhile, was simply unguardable. The Cavs even put Henry Sims on him for a while and that didn't do anything. Love finished with 33 points on 16 shots to go along with eight rebounds and six assists. 

Who knows how many points he and Rubio could've scored if they each played during the fourth quarter. 

Mike Brown's defense allowed the T-Wolves to shoot 54.9 percent from the field for the game to go along with knocking down 11-of-22 three-pointers. It was an awful night for the Cavaliers who didn't seem to try very hard while falling to 3-6 on the young season. 

But before we start breaking down the upcoming revenge game against the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday, below are 10 things I thought about during this loss.

No. 10: The Cavs need a veteran to put his arm around Anthony Bennett (6 points, 5 rebounds) and help the rookie play with confidence. Sort of like how Moses Malone did for Charles Barkley way back in the day. Once he stops playing scared out there things could change quickly for Bennett.

No. 9: When Bennett rolls to the basket on the pick-and-roll, nobody ever looks for him. Ever. Now some of that is on the rookie who does need to start calling for the ball in that situation. But some of the shots these guys are taking instead are just awful. Looking at you, Earl Clark.

No. 8: I've been a fan of Jarrett Jack's game since he was at Georgia Tech. I was also probably more excited than any blogger in America when Cleveland signed him this summer. But my man is killing me right now. He's so much better than 38 percent from the field and 2.3 turnovers per 25 minutes. 

No. 7: Sergey Karasev, though, I think the Russian Jeff Hornacek just earned himself a spot in the rotation. Seven points, four rebounds and two assists in 14 minutes. Go ahead and project those numbers to a 48-minute game, I'll wait. 

No. 6: At the beginning of last season, a Bleacher Report assignment I had was to make a bold prediction for MVP. I picked Kevin Love, was told that was too bold, and then he got hurt. But I think I may have just been a year early on that selection. 

No. 5: I wanted the Cavs to target Corey Brewer this summer in free agency to fill their void at small forward. I mentioned this multiple times and wrote about it in multiple places. He scored 27 points last night while helping shut the Cavs down defensively. He's a lot better than Alonzo Gee and Earl Clark. 

No. 4: Hope Kyrie Irving's face is okay, that was a tough shot he took from Brewer's elbow on accident. I actually didn't expect Irving to return after watching the replay and maybe he wouldn't have last year.

No. 3: Allie Clifton, too, played right through that ball bouncing off her forehead in the pregame. Hope her toughness can rub off on the team before Friday.

No. 2: This is in the game notes on NBA.com: "The Minnesota Timberwolves starting lineup outscored the entire Cleveland Cavalier team." They also identified the "turning point" as being "the opening tip." That's rough.

No. 1: Am I concerned about the 3-6 Cavs after this loss? I'll answer that question the same way Mike Brown did after the Timberwolves game: "After a performance like that you are concerned." 

Photo: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Brendan Bowers

About Brendan Bowers

I am the founding editor of StepienRules.com. I am also a content strategist and social media manager with Electronic Merchant Systems in Cleveland. My work has been published in SLAM Magazine, KICKS Magazine, The Locker Room Magazine, Cleveland.com, BleacherReport.com, InsideFacebook.com and elsewhere. I've also written a lot of articles that have been published here.

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