The Cleveland Cavaliers rebounded to down the Boston Celtics, 112-99, in the Eastern Conference finals, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Celtics came out aggressive and energetic. Even though beginning down, 5-0, Boston went on an 11-0 run to take the lead early. Great passing and offensive execution by the Celtics stretched the lead to, as many as, 11 points. Boston finished the first quarter leading 29-19.
The second period saw the Celtics keep up the pace, while the Cavaliers tried to claw back into the game. Cleveland’s star LeBron James got into foul trouble in the second and contracted his fourth foul halfway through the quarter.
The Celtics stretched the lead to 16 points, 49-33 in the next minute and a half. The Cavaliers fought back and cut the lead to 51-45, with 1:25 remaining. Boston finished the half, strong to push the lead back to 10 points, 57-47.
The Cavaliers came out of halftime with new energy and determination. They chipped away at the lead and retook the lead for themselves, 73-72, with 3:15 left. Behind the stellar shooting of Kyrie Irving, they increased their lead to finish the third period ahead of the Celtics, 87-80.
Cleveland entered the final stanza after a 40-point third quarter. James came alive in the fourth and scored 15, of his 34 points, in the period. The Cavaliers held off the Celtics to increase their lead and finish with the victory.
The Celtics were led by guard Avery Bradley, with 19 points. Cleveland’s high-scorer was Irving, who notched a career playoff high of 42 points. Kevin Love, of the Cavaliers, led all rebounders with 17 boards.
Cleveland now holds a 3-1 advantage in the best-of-seven series. The teams will clash again on Thursday, May 25, 2017, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Written By D.T. Osborn
Edited by Cathy Milne
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Featured and Top Image Courtesy of D.T. Osborn