Celtics push LeBron, Cavs into 0-2 hole

LeBron James has made Boston's TD Garden his personal playground during the playoffs in recent years.

The Boston Celtics are here, and they aren't going anywhere.

"No, I like where we are", Kerr said. "At this point we don't care if we win by half a point". He was terrific in a four-game second-round sweep of the top-seeded Toronto Raptors but is averaging 14.9 points, 9.9 rebounds and shooting just 39.1 percent from the floor in the playoffs. Imagine Jake LaMotta taunting Sugar Ray Robinson with, "I never went down, Ray. You go out and when you lay everything on the line, at the end of the day, you can live with that", he said.

The Cavs apparently have an answer for their Game 1 struggles, and it's inserting Tristan Thompson in the starting lineup. Thompson got Cleveland's first basket of the night and helped to limit Horford's effectiveness on the inside early on.

The Celtics were up 11 midway through the fourth when James struck for five straight points. Morris held James to 15 points on 5 of 16 shooting, suffocating the future Hall of Famer who has been the catalyst for the Cavs all season long.

Tempers flared with 3:49 to play with Boston leading 97-89. The matchup featured plenty of physicality, with two sets of double-technical fouls assessed.

"I think as a team, 1 through 5, we gotta all play tougher", Thompson said. We're young, but we know exactly who we're playing, we know exactly what's at stake, and we know exactly what's on the other side of that fence.

"I blatantly pushed him". And just as comic book villains shouldn't hope to unleash the Hulk, playoff opponents should be wary of an angry LeBron James looking to avenge a playoff loss, as he will on Tuesday night in Boston. Those were the only three players to score in double figures for the Cavs. Brown's 3-pointer with 32.4 seconds left in the second quarter gave Boston its biggest lead of the half (28) at 61-33.

It started with Lue whose questionable rotation management returned at the worst possible time.

"The most encouraging thing is that we weathered that storm because it's easy to fall apart there". He turned the ball over the Cavs' first possession. In 2012, with the C's one win away from a shocking return to the Finals, LeBron stepped on the floor in Boston with the ruthless disposition of the Terminator. He blocked two shots but also made seven turnovers.

They shot 51.2 percent and had 27 assists on 43 field goals, while holding a massive 60-38 edge in points in the paint.

One of the biggest reasons that Michael Jordan is considered by many as the best player to ever play the game was because of his ability to be an outstanding role model and let his actions speak louder than any words he spoke. James was diagnosed with a strained neck.

"We've got to help 'Bron", he said. It will be a different environment out in Cleveland; we will have to wait and see if the Cavs fans can match Beantown's energy and passion. He's the backbone that they'll always need.

If James doesn't rebound and become the best player in this series by a mile, Cleveland has no chance to advance.

This series, like many in the modern-day National Basketball Association, will be won or lost from behind the arc.

"That's a dirty shot", Smart said. "Our job was just to keep going". "That's what I tried to do".

In game one, Morris recorded 21 points and 10 rebounds and the Celtics beat the Cavaliers 108-83, covering as 1-point favorites.


Popular

CONNECT