Celtics survive James' attack to take 2-0 series lead

Celtics survive James' attack to take 2-0 series lead

With this outcome, this is now the second time that the Celtics have held the Cavs to under 100, and they are doing it without Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward, as well.

Kevin Love finished with 22 points and 15 rebounds.

Although history is not on the Cavaliers side, as the Boston Celtics are an astonishing 37-0 in the playoffs when leading a series 2-0. We have to win one game here (in Boston). We've got to come out swinging. "We've got to be tougher, mentally and physically". "I understand why [the referees] gave me a flag there". We had some good looks, they didn't fall.

The Cavs have yet to do that for any decent length of time. Following that run, the Celtics never looked back as they turned a seven point deficit at half to a seven point lead going into the fourth quarter. He scored 21 of Cleveland's 27 points in the first quarter, tying his playoff career high for points in a period.

Korver added 11 points off the bench for Cleveland.

Last night Clevelands starting backcourt consisted of George Hill and J.R. Smith who combined for a total of three points on 1-11 shooting. The foul play emerged under the basket after Al Horford tried to connect on a Marcus Smart lob, only to find himself pushed to the ground mid-flight by resident bad boy JR Smith. The push knocked Horford off-balance and sent him to the floor in a heap, though he did not appear to be injured on the play.

Yet Jordan Clarkson didn't play at all in Game 2 after posting 10 points, three rebounds and no assists in Game 1.

"I'm going to go home tonight and see my three kids, see my family, recalibrate, see my mom", James said after the game. "We have each other's backs".

Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals series between Boston and Cleveland is scheduled for 10:30am Sunday morning AEST, 20 May 2018.

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"I don't think tougher", Smith said afterward, showing better defensive instincts than during the game.

"We need tremendous focus. Getting back home and digesting what we need to do over these next few days will be big for those guys, and going back home in general and playing at The Q will be huge".

Game 2 offered plenty of pushing, shoving and staring, but the only board-certified cheap shot was authored not by a Celtic, but a Cavalier.

"We really lean on him", said Brown of Horford. They did what they had to do, and now it's our time to try to do that as well.

Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart has accused Cleveland Cavaliers rival JR Smith of being a "dirty" player after the two nearly came to blows in Game 2 of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals.

Oddly enough, it's Cleveland guard JR Smith who drew criticism for borderline dirty play.

But even before James retreated to the locker room momentarily, flaws in the Cavaliers' approach were apparent.

"I felt like I needed to go back to the locker room, which I did, and kind of recalibrate", he said. But even LeBron called it "obviously incidental". His shoulder hit me right square in the jaw. "And then if you can make it as hard as possible for as long as possible, maybe you can get somewhere". "But it didn't affect my game after that".

But there's no reason to panic. Roughly 93 percent of teams to drop the first two games go on to lose the series. You go out and when you lay everything on the line, at the end of the day, you can live with that. It actually makes me feel better about myself.

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