BOSTON — LeBron James scored 30 factors, Kevin Love had 21 factors and 12 rebounds, and the Cleveland Cavaliers steamrolled the Boston Celtics 130-86 on Friday night time to take a 2-0 lead in the Japanese Convention finals and tie an NBA report with their 13th straight playoff victory.
Cleveland led by 14 factors after one quarter, by a report 41 on the half and by 46 after three. Even with James and the remainder of the starters sitting out the fourth quarter, the 130 factors was probably the most ever scored by the franchise in a playoff sport.
Kyrie Irving had 23 factors for the Cavaliers, who return house with an opportunity to complete off the Celtics in Cleveland. It could be the third straight sweep this publish-season for the defending NBA champions, who additionally gained the final three video games of final 12 months’s finals.
Recreation three is Sunday night time.
"It is one sport. I do not care in case you win by 200 factors," Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue stated. "We're going again house, we're not going to get comfy. We perceive that it is a good workforce. They are not No. in the East for no motive."
The Celtics performed the second half with out Isaiah Thomas resulting from a strained proper hip. Celtics coach Brad Stevens stated the star level guard had a nagging damage that he aggravated per week in the past in the course of the second-spherical series in opposition to Washington.
"He was fairly despondent not to have the ability to play," Stevens stated." That man's a tricky man, and he performs via lots. For him to have to sit down was fairly onerous."
Requested how a lot that damage his workforce, Stevens stated, "Not 44 factors value."
"I do not wish to put that on anyone man," he stated. "Finally, they have been terrific. We have been poor. You've got bought to have the ability to decide up the slack, actually, when different guys aren't accessible."
With each groups going to their benches early in the fourth quarter, the one suspense was whether or not the Celtics might keep away from the worst playoff loss in franchise historical past. The Orlando Magic beat them by 47 factors in the primary spherical of the 1995 publish-season.
Nonetheless, it was the Celtics' worst house playoff loss ever.
"It's embarrassing," Celtics guard Avery Bradley stated. "As a person, as a basketball workforce, it would say lots about us how we reply."
Thomas completed with only a pair of free throws, lacking all six pictures from the sector; he additionally had six assists. Rookie Jaylen Brown scored 19 for Boston, Avery Bradley had 13 and Al Horford had 11 factors and 5 rebounds.
The sport tipped off about 15 minutes after the three finalists for NBA MVP have been introduced, and James wasn't amongst them. It is the primary time since 2008 that he will not end in the highest three.
"You have to give the award to totally different folks from time to time," Lue stated. "However to me, LeBron's the MVP. Similar to (Shaquille O'Neal), you may give him the MVP each season, if you wish to."
James, who's gained the award 4 instances, nonetheless has an opportunity for a fourth NBA title -- and second in a row. Perhaps Golden State can determine a option to gradual him down, or San Antonio if it could possibly come again in the West. The Celtics have not discovered a approach, and so they're working out of time.
James had 22 factors in the primary half, when he additionally collected six assists and had three blocked pictures, together with a chase-down rejection of Bradley that was harking back to the one in opposition to Andre Iguodala in Recreation 7 of the NBA Finals.
That one was essential to clinching Cleveland's first championship for the reason that Browns gained the NFL title in 1964.
This yet one more like rubbing the Celtics' noses in the truth that they simply could not cease him.
Cavaliers: James is first participant with no less than 30 factors in eight straight playoff video games since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1970. ... James performed simply 33 minutes -- a low for this publish-season and simply the second time he performed fewer than 40 in the 2017 playoffs.
Celtics: Stevens began Gerald Inexperienced in place of Amir Johnson. Inexperienced made his first two pictures -- each three-pointers -- however completed with six factors. ... The Celtics missed their first six pictures. ... There was a big contingent of New England Patriots sitting courtside, together with tight finish Rob Gronkowski, backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and proprietor Robert Kraft. ... Thomas and Stevens have been hit with technical fouls a couple of minute aside in the second quarter.