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23 Mar 2018

Phoenix Suns vs Cleveland Cavaliers: Lineups, preview & prediction 3/23/18

While the Cavaliers (42-29) will likely be the third seed in the East come the playoffs, the three-time defending conference champions will not go down without a fight. That much was evident Wednesday night when they stormed back from a 15-point halftime deficit to rally past the best team in the conference, the Toronto Raptors, 132-129.

Now at the point where his everyday greatness is being overlooked in the MVP race, LeBron James had a staggering 35-point, 17-assist performance while not committing a turnover in nearly 40 minutes. Kevin Love added 23 points and 12 rebounds while George Hill made ten of 11 shots and added 22 points for Cleveland, who hold a 1.5-game lead atop the Central Division and are looking for a fourth straight win.

On the other end of the spectrum are Phoenix (19-53), who are one-half game worse than Memphis for the league's worst record as the race for the most ping-pong balls for this summer's draft provides non-playoff intrigue. The Suns have lost nine straight and 19 of their last 20 after being rolled 115-88 by Detroit on Tuesday night.

Alex Len had 19 points and 12 rebounds, and Troy Daniels went four of five from 3-point range to chip in 18 points as the short-handed Suns played without injured starters Devin Booker (hand), T. J. Warren (knee) and Tyson Chandler (neck). Warren and Chandler will likely miss this contest, while Booker could be a game-time decision.

The Suns need to win four of their final ten games to avoid their first 60-loss season since going 16-66 in their inaugural season in 1968/69.