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Mendoza: Covering Cleveland win on my Huawei

05 May, 2018, 01:40 | Author: Rachael Silva
  • The win in Game 1 has not only shifted the home court advantage to the Cleveland Cavaliers it has put a tremendous amount of pressure on the Toronto Raptors a team with a history of being knocked out by the Cavs

When the final horn blared ending Game Two of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Thursday night (Friday, Manila time), the Toronto Raptors had the glazed look of a boxer who just realized the empty feeling that the fighter on the opposite corner is simply too big, too strong, too good.

LeBron scored more points in the second half than any Raptor did over all 48 minutes, pouring in 27 on 19 field goal attempts.

In the end, the Cavs are taking a 2-0 lead back to Cleveland after dismantling Toronto 128-110.

In the fourth, James closed the door entirely, putting on an exhibition from midrange with a series of unguardable daggers. LeBron finished with 43 points, 14 assists and eight rebounds.

Then in his first season with the Miami Heat, James arrived into the 2011 NBA Finals after averaging 26 points, 8.9 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game in the playoffs, shooting 46.3 percent. The Cavs' coach said nothing had changed in his player's mindset, but Love was obviously more comfortable the floor. No matter whom the Raptors stuck on LeBron or Kevin Love in Game 2, it did no good.

JJ Redick led Philadelphia with 23 points. "Right now he's the enemy and we've got to do a better job of not being part of history. I go out there every night and fight and try to help this team win".

Toronto now face a tall order in Cleveland, where they are 0-5 in postseason appearances and will be desperate for a win on Saturday as no National Basketball Association team has successfully recovered from being down 0-3 in a best-of-seven playoff series. All that probably ended when the entire city sat and watched LeBron sink their season, one fadeaway at a time.

That said, let's get into breaking down how each of these role players has stepped up to lead Cleveland to a 2-0 series lead.

"When he retires, that's what you admire what he's done", said Toronto coach Dwane Casey. The top-seeded Raptors have some serious work to do if they're going to win the series.

The Celtics also own a 2-0 series lead after rookie Jayson Tatum capped his 21-point performance by hitting a pair of free throws in the closing second to secure a 108-103 victory over the 76ers. But Lowry was in foul trouble early in the third quarter and the Raptors' 11 turnovers, leading to 13 Cavs' points were costly - especially in comparison to Cleveland's three turnovers. But sometimes you're going to butt heads, and I mean, my entire life and my entire pro career - this is going to be my 10th year - I've spent the majority of my time at the 4 position and the power forward position.

Love's shooting ability provides spacing at the center position, and theoretically forces opposing centers to follow him out to the perimeter where Love has the advantage.

And whatever preparations James has made clearly worked as he stole the show in Toronto in Game 2.



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