Kevin Love finished with 22 points and 15 rebounds. How did the Celtics win Game 2? The Cavaliers were in control all of the first half, quieting the crowd as they held a seven point lead going into halftime.
But before this can ring true, Boston must find a way to do something they haven't been able to consistently achieve thus far: take their stellar home form on the road. In the playoffs, they've played great at home (9-0). We're the underdogs. We're coming in, Cleveland is picked to beat us. We've got to be aggressive.
Smart's 3-pointer with 4:34 left in the third quarter gave the Celtics a 72-71 lead after they had trailed by 11. They went out and got Ray Allen.
The Cavs have yet to do that for any decent length of time.
While James did what he vowed to do following game 1 defeat, the Celtics stuck to what they do best: defend that opened the gate to offense in the second half and to a 107-94 win in Game 2 on the way to taking a 2-0 series lead.
That erased a seven-point 55-48 Cleveland edge of what remained an 11-point advantage in the first quarter alone where James had 21 points.
In the latest BBALLBREAKDOWN podcast, Coach Dave DuFour joins me to discuss Game 2, including LeBron James and the league's concussion protocol, Stevens performance thoroughly out-coaching the Cavs' Tyronn Lue, and the increasingly obvious reality that the Celtics are simply the better team.
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Both teams will now have two days to rest before Game 3 sends the series back to Cleveland this Saturday.
We don't even know if this is a good or bad thing for the Cavaliers at this point.
J.R. Smith went scoreless (0-for-7), Jeff Green had six points and George Hill just three points. Baynes played the final 6:46 of the quarter and finished with four points and two rebounds, once again showing the ability to positively and efficiently impact the game in the minutes he was on the floor.
Rodney Hood had two points, two boards and one assist in 11 minutes, giving him 13, two and three in 30 minutes. "I blatantly pushed him".
A year ago, Kyrie Irving averaged 25.8 points in the Cavs' five-game rampage over the Celtics in the conference finals.
"I'm going to go home tonight and see my three kids, see my family, recalibrate, see my mom", James said after the game. They did what no other team in National Basketball Association history could, come back from a 3-1 deficit in the Finals to win the National Basketball Association championship.
We have to salute the folks at NBC Sports Boston for getting this list to five. Game 3 is Saturday in Cleveland.
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"I think we can definitely learn from (Boston)", Love said.
"We need tremendous focus". As one reader posted at the bottom of columnist Terry Pluto's work, "The Cavaliers are in way over their heads with this more talented and better coached Celtic team and even the best player on the planet is not enough to overcome that".
Regardless of the opinions of Bayless, Cleveland now finds itself in a 2-0 hole in the best-of-seven series.
LeBron James took a literal shot to the jaw in Game 2 but kept right on scoring.
"We have an opportunity to go back home (and) protect home court", James said.
"We really lean on him", said Brown of Horford.
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