Cleveland Cavaliers small forward LeBron James (23) goes up for a shot in the lane while Boston Celtics forward Marcus Morris defends during the first half of Game 1 in the 2018 NBA Eastern Conference Finals at TD Garden in Boston.
Guard LeBron James, and keep the four-time NBA MVP from running the Celtics out of their own gym in the Eastern Conference finals for the second year in a row.
Boston led 36-18 after one quarter after going up by as many as 21, matching the biggest first-quarter deficit James has ever faced in a playoff game.
The Celtics seized the lead in the best-of-7 Eastern Conference finals, with the victor to face either season wins leader Houston or defending champion Golden State in the NBA Finals.
He said his past playoff success against Horford has come by him being himself, which means being active early. "He was my matchup and I think they did a great job of communicating throughout the whole game, knowing where I was and all of my teammates was".
Though James will surely put in a much better performance, it's hard to go past Boston at the -1.0 point line offered by oddsmakers after their 25 point victory in Game 1. Bet the Boston Celtics -1.0 over the Cavaliers in game 2. The Celtics jumped out to a 20 point lead in the first quarter and held it through to the final buzzer.
Kevin Love finished with 22 points and 15 rebounds for Cleveland. The best player of his generation averages 20.3 points per game with a paltry 14.6% shooting from three-point range in the last 12 games he's played against a team including Morris. "We came out with a lot of energy". Now, Cleveland will attempt to avoid a two-game deficit when it faces Boston again Tuesday (8:30 p.m. ET) at TD Garden in the 2018 National Basketball Association playoffs. Boston will be confident after Game 1, but they will be fully aware of the offensive capabilities of the Cavs at their best, so expect a typically committed and disciplined defensive performance. LeBron had a rough game 1, but he's too good to be shutdown all series long.
Odds are the Cavaliers will hit a few more of those "wide-open" looks if they get them again in Game 2, and odds are they'll get more than 12 points out of their three-point attempts.
"I think we're very alert to the fact that we'll get a heavyweight punch on Tuesday night", Celtics coach Brad Stevens said.
After the game, the internet went insane once again. the masses came out with creative memes before the game practically making fun of Morris for suggesting such a thing.
This marked the 15th time in James' illustrious career that his team has dropped the first game of a postseason series.
There are small adjustments to be made, but the Cavaliers also have the option of breaking out a line-up change that could rob Boston of some of their switchability. We've got to clean those up. If the past is any indication, LeBron is about to bounce back in a big way in game 2.
In a 2014 story about James" powers of recall, ESPN's Brian Windhorst quoted a childhood friend of the future Hall of Famer as saying, "When you play [the video game] "Madden' with him now you have to be careful which teams you take, because he will know what your game plans were in the past when you've played with him and he'll pick the opposing team knowing what plays you want to run".