Sports

Boston Celtics overcome another huge night from LeBron James

Boston Celtics overcome another huge night from LeBron James

Previous year during the playoffs, while praising the play of then-Cavs backup guard Deron Williams, James instantly recalled several straight possessions, in detail, of how Williams impacted the game. The Boston Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-83. You saw it in round one when he brutalized the Pacers in Game 2 (and after any in win, actually), and you've seen it in all five Eastern Conference series in which LeBron's team has lost the first game.

Jaylen Brown totaled 23 points and seven rebounds to help the Boston Celtics take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference finals with a 107-94 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night.

Boston improved to 9-0 this postseason at TD Garden.

As a franchise, the Celtics are 37-0 when taking a 2-0 lead in a series. "So we gotta be tougher - mentally and physically", Lue said. "At this point we don't care if we win by half a point".

What did matter to Thompson was how Cleveland responded to Boston's physicality overall. After the Tatum play, he shot 7-for-14 the rest of the way with six more rebounds and eight more assists.

LeBron answered the bell with a monster, 21-point first quarter, as was about the surest bet in history. After a James layup, Rozier tossed in a layup to make it a 14-point game.

The 28-year-old was thrust into Boston's starting line-up for Game One and found himself defending against LeBron in 24 plays during the game, limiting the three-time National Basketball Association champion to five points on two-for-six from the field and two assists and forcing one turnover.

He returned a few minutes later and finished out the half with what the Cavaliers said was a strained neck.

"I think I'll be fine. I'm not going to lose sleep over it", James said postgame. "They did what they had to do to protect home court and now it is our time as well". Kevin Love played strong all game with 22 points and 15 rebounds. First, he drew a foul on LeBron James and drilled both his freebies to increase the lead. When Horford then took a shove to the back from J.R. Smith on an alley-oop attempt, Smart got in Smith's face and Smith gave Smart back a shove. You just go play. "We can't allow that to keep happening".

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Boston's balanced attack was effective again, with six players reaching double figures.

The Cavs superstar scored just 15 points, well below the 34 points per game he has averaged in this season's playoffs. James also uncharacteristically turned the ball over seven times which was one more time than all of the Celtic starters.

Trailing 55-48 at halftime, Boston clamped down on defense and took it to the Cavs in the third quarter. And exactly why it needs to be Morris in that starting lineup and stuck to James like glue from the opening tip.

In the first-round series against the Indiana Pacers, the Cavs struggled offensively.

James was also astoundingly efficient, using his dribble to create space, while he knocked down an assortment of jump shots.

Moments after Morris' exultation, Marcus Smart, whose hustle and energy proved vital throughout the game, hit a go-ahead 3-pointer. Smith was levied a two-game suspension for the act. "I thought Semi (Ojeleye) did a good job on the couple of possessions he guarded him, which is really hard to just come off the bench not in the flow of the game and put a body in front of him, but he's unbelievable". And as long as the Cavs play this poorly trying to slow down the Celtics, this will be a short series. "I think we can definitely learn from them".

"We've got each other's backs, and that's it". He scored more points than he did in Game 1 before the first quarter ended.

"That's a dirty shot", Smart said. "That's what I tried to do".

Cavaliers: Were outscored 50-42 in the paint after being outscored 60-38 in Game 1.


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