TV: League Pass
- Cavaliers power forward Marreese Speights and shooting guard Wayne Ellington will make their debuts with the team. They were acquired from Memphis, along with point guard Josh Selby and a first-round draft pick, in exchange for power forward Jon Leuer on Tuesday. “We’re trying to make (running plays) as simple as possible tonight because we want them reacting, rather than thinking out there,” Cleveland coach Byron Scott said.
- Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving became the sixth-youngest player ever to be named to the NBA All-Star Game when he was chosen as an Eastern Conference reserve on Thursday. The reigning Rookie of the Year ranks sixth in the league in scoring (23.7), and leads Cleveland in assists (5.7) and steals (1.75). “We know he’s going to score, but we can’t let him get 40 points tonight,” Bucks coach Jim Boylan said.
- The Cavaliers are seeking their first three-game winning streak at home since Nov. 16-Nov. 27, 2010. Their starters are Irving, shooting guard Dion Waiters, small forward Alonzo Gee, power forward Tristan Thompson, and center Tyler Zeller. Shooting guard C.J. Miles (flu) is active and will be a game-time decision, but would come off the bench if he is available.
- Milwaukee will start point guard Brandon Jennings, shooting guard Monta Ellis, small forward Luc Mbah a Moute, power forward Ersan Ilyasova, and center Larry Sanders. The Bucks are 6-2 since Boylan replaced Scott Skiles as coach on Jan. 8. “We’re moving the ball well, we’re getting good shots, and consequently we’re making more shots,” Boylan said.
- Boylan remains displeased that Jennings and Ellis were not selected for the NBA All-Star Game by the East coaches. The two backup guard spots went to Irving and 76ers point guard Jrue Holiday. “I put a lot of weight into the success of a team, so I was a little surprised they didn’t make it,” he said. Milwaukee is 22-18, while Philadelphia is 17-25 and Cleveland is 11-32.
- The Cavaliers’ inactives are Selby (D-League assignment with Canton Charge) and center Anderson Varejao (blood clots in lungs, right knee surgery), while Milwaukee’s inactives are center Joel Przybilla and shooting guard Doron Lamb. Though Lamb has a sprained left ankle, Boylan said he was a healthy scratch.
– Brian Dulik