If you want your team to have any chance at winning the series or making it to the Finals, you must resist all temptation to play this man for major minutes. When he is on the floor for extended periods of time, bad things happen for your team. Over the last three games he is 0-for-13 with five points and six assists. When he comes out there, the offense grinds to a halt and falls into a halfcourt abortion that more often than not ends in a missed shot that he throws up. He is still in love with his own shot even though he can't hit it right now, and he brings nothing to the table defensively.
You did the right thing to leave him on the bench once you put Rajon Rondo back in last night in the middle of the second quarter. That was the key decision of the game because Rondo can harass guys on defense and push the tempo on offense. He literally changed the way the entire game was played by the men in green.
I know you can't leave Rondo out there for the entire 48 minutes, but you can just let the man in the picture stay out there for five or six straight minutes. It kills your team. Just say no, Doc.
I had to say this because you like to follow the conventional wisdom too much when it comes to lineups. Yes, I know Rondo is a youngster and Cassell has all that playoff experience, including two rings. I know that little voice in your head, that conventional wisdom, tells you that Cassell must play because he knows what to do out there, etc., better than a more talented second year player like Rondo.
I know that if Rondo starts off bad on the road in game six, you'll want to yank him and put the savvy veteran in there to calm things down. That's a bad idea. You cannot play slow with Cleveland; they will beat you because that's their game. If you want to win, you have to run them because they'd rather not play that way. You just can't do that with Cassell in there for big stretches. Either divide up his minutes differently or just let him play M.L. Carr. Trust me, you'll be better off for it in the long run.