Toronto • Watching LeBron James at shootaround, Kevin Love knew one thing particular was in retailer.
Possibly not the fadeaway jumpers James saved making, every seemingly with a better diploma of problem than the final, however he was certain there can be one thing.
“This morning you could possibly simply sense it,” Love mentioned. “He knew what was at stake, he knew us getting one other win right here was going to be big for us. He got here out and he performed that means from the leap. You can simply sense that he was going to have a particular evening.”
James had 43 factors and 14 assists, Love added 31 factors and 11 rebounds, and the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Toronto Raptors 128-110 on Thursday to take a 2-Zero lead of their second-round playoff collection.
James delivered the primary 40-point, 14-assist sport in NBA playoff historical past, in accordance with the Elias Sports activities Bureau.
He added eight rebounds, narrowly lacking his second straight triple-double, and related on 19 of 28 makes an attempt in a efficiency so dominant that the beleaguered Raptors’ metropolis was being referred to as “LeBronto” by the point the evening was over.
“He acquired it going and he was feeling it,” Cavs coach Tyronn Lue mentioned.
James, in the meantime, gave credit score to Love, who shot 11 for 21 and missed matching his profession playoff excessive by one level.
“It was nice to see that efficiency out of him,” James mentioned. “He’s our All-Star energy ahead. That’s an enormous sport for him.”
J.R. Smith scored 15 factors, Jeff Inexperienced had 14 and George Hill 13 because the Cavaliers posted their eighth consecutive postseason victory over the Raptors and halted Toronto’s four-game successful streak in Recreation 2s. The Raptors entered 6-1 all-time when taking part in Recreation 2 at residence.
“Love acquired happening us and that was a tough matchup for us,” Raptors coach Dwane Casey mentioned. “Now we have some matchup points everywhere in the courtroom.”
DeMar DeRozan scored 24 factors and Kyle Lowry had 21 for the Raptors. Toronto received a team-record 59 video games and completed because the top-seeded workforce within the Jap Convention this season, however was simply shoved one step nearer to a 3rd straight postseason exit by the hands of James and the Cavs.
Jonas Valanciunas had 16 factors and 12 rebounds and Fred VanVleet scored 14 factors, however the Raptors misplaced back-to-back residence video games for the primary time all season.
Toronto matched Houston by going 34-7 at residence within the common season, and went Three-Zero at residence towards Washington in spherical one. The Raptors had not misplaced consecutive residence video games since dropping Video games Three and four of the second spherical to Cleveland final Could.
The collection shifts to Ohio for Recreation Three on Saturday evening. Toronto has gone Zero-5 at Cleveland over the previous two postseasons, dropping by a mean margin of 24.2 factors per sport.
“Typically once you’re put in powerful conditions, that’s what brings the perfect out of you,” DeRozan mentioned. “That’s what level we’re at now.”
Sadly for the Raptors, James insisted the Cavs aren’t glad with their 2-Zero lead.
“We is not going to let our guards down,” James promised.
The Cavaliers, who tied a postseason low with three turnovers, are 21-Three at residence towards Jap Convention opponents within the playoffs over the previous 4 years.
The Raptors, who let a 10-point lead slip away in a 113-112 time beyond regulation loss in Recreation 1, had been up 54-45 halfway by means of the second quarter however noticed their lead dwindle to 63-61 at halftime.
Cleveland took management as Smith scored six factors in an 18-5 spurt to start the third quarter. The Cavs outscored the Raptors 37-24 within the third to take an 11-point edge into the fourth, and Toronto didn’t problem once more.
“That’s form of what received the sport for us,” Lue mentioned of Cleveland’s huge third quarter.
James was heading in the right direction in Cleveland’s game-changing third quarter, connecting on seven of 10 makes an attempt and scoring 15 factors. Love added 9 because the Cavs took a 98-87 result in the fourth.
Cavaliers: The 24 mixed factors by James and Love within the third matched Toronto’s whole for the quarter. … The Cavaliers are 18-1 in playoff collection after they win Recreation 1.
Raptors: Lowry made his first six shot makes an attempt. … Toronto made 11 turnovers and has 25 within the collection, in comparison with 9 by the Cavs. … Lowry led Toronto with eight assists.
Serge Ibaka shot Zero for five and scored simply two factors in 12 minutes, and didn’t return after making a turnover and lacking a shot within the first two minutes of the third. Ibaka has 9 whole factors within the collection to this point.
“Serge hasn’t been himself,” Casey acknowledged. “I don’t know what it’s.”
After a pair of verbal confrontations with Cleveland’s Kendrick Perkins in Recreation 1, rapper Drake stayed out of hassle in Recreation 2. Earlier than the sport, the NBA requested the Raptors to inform Drake to tone down his act. The three-time Grammy winner has been Toronto’s international ambassador since 2013. Drake shook palms with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver when Silver handed by Drake’s courtside seats to do a tv interview within the second quarter.
Recreation Three is Saturday evening at eight:30 p.m.