Raptors to face off against Cavaliers starting Tuesday at ACC

LeBron James had 45 points to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers past the Indiana Pacers 105-101 on Sunday to win their opening-round playoff series in seven games.

James also had nine rebounds and eight assists to improve to 13-0 in first-round series over his career. But it wasn’t easy as after 54-43 half-time lead, the Cavaliers went into the fourth 76-74 advantage and James on the bench.

But when the four-time MVP returned, Cleveland had stretched that advantage to nine points.

“My guys stepped up,” James said. ”I wasn’t able to start the fourth quarter, I had a minor injury and the all-star Kevin Love produced for us.

“We had a two-point lead going into the fourth but I came back in and it was a nine-point lead. We definitely needed that.”

Love had 14 points, six rebounds and two assists for Cleveland. Toronto’s Tristan Thompson added 15 points and 10 rebounds while George Hill, back in the Cavaliers lineup after missing three games, had 11 points, six rebounds and three assists despite seeing his first action in third.

Hill played just over 19 minutes in the contest.

“How do we split the game ball in half between Tristan and G Hill,” James said. “(Hill) didn’t play the last three then came in in the third quarter and gave us a huge lift.

“Tristan was magnificent protecting the rim, getting offensive rebounds and getting their bigs into foul trouble. Guys just staying ready, that’s what true professionalism is all about.”

Victor Olapido scored 27 points for the Pacers while Darren Collison added 23 points.

Cleveland will now face the Toronto Raptors in second-round action. That series is scheduled to begin Tuesday night at the Air Canada Centre.

Toronto won a club-record 59 games this season en route to finishing atop the Eastern Conference. But the Raptors have gone 2-8 in thee playoffs the last two years against Cleveland.

“They’re a great basketball team,” James said of the Raptors. “Kudos to (Toronto head coach) Dwane Casey.

“First of all they’ve got like 10-to-12 guys who come in and produce every single night. We know the head of the snake is (DeMar) DeRozan and (Kyle) Lowry but those guys off the bench they come in with the same attitude and the same confidence as the starters. We don’t have much time to prepare so we’re going to go into Game 1 and just kind of wing and just go from there.”

Redes Sociais - Comentários

Artigos relacionados

Back to top button


Quer receber a edição semanal e as newsletters editoriais no seu e-mail?


Mais próximo. Mais dinâmico. Mais atual.
O mesmo de sempre, mas melhor!