Sir Charles clearly had no idea how right he would be.
The defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers exploded to a 72-31 halftime lead—the largest halftime advantage in playoff history—and cruised to 130-86 blowout of the Boston Celtics to take a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference finals.
It was the biggest playoff win ever for the Cavaliers, while being the Celtics’ worst home playoff loss in franchise history. Boston fell three points shy of matching its worst postseason defeat.
LeBron James, who scored 22 of his 30 points in the first half, never lost a playoff series when up 2-0 and this series now shifts to Cleveland for Games 3 and 4 Sunday and Tuesday with outmanned Boston just trying to bring it back home for Game 5 Thursday night.
The win was the 13th straight playoff victory for the Cavaliers, who have not lost since Game 4 of last year’s NBA Finals. The streak tied an NBA record.
James, the first player since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1970) with eight straight 30-point playoff games, and the rest of the Cleveland starters were pulled with 1:47 left in the third quarter.
To make things worse for the Celtics, Isaiah Thomas was lost to a right hip strain at halftime. He was scoreless, missing all six shots in the first half, but he did assist on six of his team’s 11 baskets in the half.
James, who was a plus-46 in the game (plus-63 in two games), dished out seven assists and added four rebounds, four steals and three blocked shots, while Kevin Love had 21 points and 12 rebounds and Kyrie Irving 23 points. The trio went a combined 11 of 21 from 3-point range.
The Cavs, who went 19 of 39 from 3-point range (Boston was 8 of…
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