The Celtics punched the Cavaliers first and by no means seemed again in rolling to a Sport 1 rout.
LeBron James took a literal shot to the jaw in Sport 2 however saved proper on scoring.
So did the Celtics.
Jaylen Brown scored 23 factors and Boston withstood a 42-point evening by James to beat Cleveland 107-94 on Tuesday and take a 2-Zero lead within the Jap Convention finals.
Terry Rozier added 18 factors, whereas Al Horford completed with 15 factors and 10 rebounds.
Boston improved to 9-Zero this post-season at TD Backyard. The Celtics have by no means blown a 2-Zero sequence lead within the playoffs.
“We will battle,” Rozier mentioned. “At this level we do not care if we win by half a degree. If we win, that is all that issues.”
James added 12 assists and 10 rebounds. He scored 21 of Cleveland’s 27 factors within the first quarter , tying his playoff profession excessive for factors in a interval. His 42 factors marked his fifth 40-point sport of this post-season. James had simply 15 factors and missed all 5 of his 3-point makes an attempt within the Cavs’ Sport 1 loss.
‘I feel I will be advantageous’
However he did not appear to play with the identical power after straining his neck in a first-half collision and the Cavaliers wilted within the second half, with the Celtics outscoring them 59-39.
“I feel I will be advantageous. I am not going to lose sleep over it. You exit and if you lay every part on the road, on the finish of the day, you’ll be able to reside with that,” he mentioned. “They did what they needed to do, and that was defend dwelling, and now it is our time to strive to try this, as properly.”
Kevin Love completed with 22 factors and 15 rebounds for Cleveland.
As anticipated, Tristan Thompson began rather than Kyle Korver within the hopes his presence may energize what was a sluggish Cavs offence in Sport 1. Thompson received Cleveland’s first basket of the evening and helped to restrict Horford’s effectiveness on the within early on.
Korver added 11 factors off the bench for Cleveland. However starters Thompson, JR Smith and George Hill mixed for simply 11 factors on 5-of-17 taking pictures.
Tempers flared with 3:49 to play with Boston main 97-89. Marcus Morris received in Smith’s face after Smith pushed Horford within the again to stop a layup. Smith shoved Morris and the pair needed to be separated.
Smith was assessed a flagrant foul and each obtained technical fouls.
“I felt prefer it was uncalled for that sort of play there,” Horford mentioned. “We’ve one another’s backs. … We moved on to the following play means and we locked in after that.”
Smith mentioned there was no malicious intent on the play.
‘I blatantly pushed him’
“I blatantly pushed him. It wasn’t like I used to be attempting to low bridge him or one thing. Simply ensure that he did not get it,” Smith mentioned. “It was an excellent, laborious foul.”
Boston’s balanced assault was efficient once more, with six gamers reaching double figures. Cleveland had 15 turnovers resulting in 13 Boston factors. The Celtics turned it over simply six instances.
Boston led 84-77 after three quarters and took command late within the fourth with the Cavs getting little offence apart from from James. Cleveland’s starters have been pulled with 1:48 left and the Cavs down 14.
James was on the assault from the opening tip. He turned the ball over the Cavs’ first possession. Nevertheless it was one in every of his solely miscues within the first quarter.
James was additionally astoundingly environment friendly, utilizing his dribble to create area, whereas he knocked down an assortment of soar photographs.
He completed the opening quarter eight of 13 from the sphere and four of seven from the 3-point line.
His momentum was stunted briefly on the 3:50 mark of the second quarter, when Jayson Tatum was whistled for a foul after catching James jaw along with his shoulder as he tried a steal. James stayed within the sport and linked on one in every of his ensuing free throws, however then exited to the locker room with Cleveland main 47-36.
The Cavaliers mentioned James had a neck sprain. He returned after lacking lower than two minutes of sport time.
Boston flurried simply earlier than the half, getting six factors from Morris within the last minute to trim Cleveland’s result in 55-48 on the break.
“I feel we simply have a bunch of fellows that basically consider in one another,” Horford mentioned. “Our group in powerful instances, we have at all times discovered a means.”