Oladipo scored 28 points (28/3/3), while Joseph added 21 (21/5/2) to help the Pacers set a franchise record for shooting percentage with 66.7% on the night. In the 2016-17 season, James finished sixth in assists per game (8.7). And know all the plays, what they're doing and reads.
James usually handles the ball for Cleveland and is its assists leader on the season, but he played the point because Derrick Rose (sprained left ankle) was out and coach Tyronn Lue sought a bigger lineup.
Wade, a former James team-mate on two National Basketball Association championship teams in Miami who joined the Cavs after playing in Chicago last season, was benched at his own request after struggling as a starter. "It makes the job a lot easier for me".
J.R. Smith moved back into the starting backcourt with James, while the front line saw Kevin Love moved from centre to forward. Rookie Donovan Mitchell (19/2/1) was the best player for the Jazz, but no other player on the team managed to score more than 12 points on the night. Robin Lopez scored 16 points and seven rebounds.
Conversely, James is the only active player to notch 20-plus points and 10-plus assists at four starting positions, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Former Cavs point guard Kay Felder had 13 points, all in the first half. "Seventeen threes again where guys are just looking at us, staring us down and raising for shots".
Here's what we learned from the win.
Cleveland extended its run to 12-0 to go up 81-72, but James went to the bench for the final 6:31 of the third and the Cavs were promptly outscored 17-7, putting them behind 92-91 entering the fourth quarter.
The Cavs, who repeatedly failed to close out on the perimeter, overcame another frightful start and hot shooting by the Bulls to trail just 68-65 at halftime.
Justin Holiday and Lauri Markkanen led the way for Chicago with 25 and 19 points respectively. But that's just the first quality defender who should draw the assignment of guarding the Bulls rookie as both James and Tristan Thompson likely will get time to play against him.
Cleveland flaunts a solid defense so far this season, the unit is now allowing 103 per game and limited all three opponents to a combined.438 from the field.