May 10: Cavs 108, Celtics 84Posted by Inside Hoops
The AP reports: LeBron James scored 21 points on another off-shooting night, but Delonte West scored 21, Joe Smith had 17 and the Cavaliers raced to a large, early lead in Game 3 in a 108-84 victory Saturday night over the road-challenged Boston Celtics to pull within 2-1 in their playoff series… James was only 5-of-16 from the floor, but his teammates stepped it up, going a combined 32-of-54 (59 percent). Cleveland roared to a 32-13 lead after one quarter, led by 17 at half, 16 after three and easily withstood a few Boston counter punches… The Cavs played a nearly flawless first quarter. They shot 65 percent (13-of-20), had 11 assists on those field goals and didn’t commit a turnover. Beyond that, Cleveland didn’t rely on James to carry them, as six other Cavs combined for 27 of the club’s 32 points… The Cavaliers were leading 39-17 in the second quarter when this series had its first moment of tension. As he was driving to the basket, James was grabbed around the neck by Posey and fell awkwardly in the lane. He laid face down on the floor as both teams exchanged angry words and Anderson Varejao and Posey earned technicals for their exuberance.
InsideHoops.com Stat Notes: The Cavs shot 53.6%, the Celtics just 40.5%. The Cavs nailed 10-of-19 three-pointers, the Celtics just 5-of-16 (Ray Allen 0-of-5 threes). The Cavs got to the free throw line more, rebounded a bit more, and won the assists total 29-18. Turnovers and steals were around even.
For the Cavs, LeBron James (5-of-16) had 21 points, 5 rebounds, 8 assists, 4 steals and 3 blocks. Delonte West (7-of-11, 4-of-6 threes) had 21 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists. Joe Smith came off the bench to shoot 7-of-8 for 17 points and 6 rebounds. Wally Szczerbiak took 10 shots for 16 points. Zydrunas Ilgauskas had 12 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists.
For the Celtics, Kevin Garnett (8-of-13) had 17 points, 9 rebounds and little else. Paul Pierce (just 3-of-8) had 14 points and 5 assists (but 4 turnovers). Kendrick Perkins (4-of-8) had 12 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks. Ray Allen was just 4-of-12 for 10 points, 4 assists and 3 steals. Sam Cassell shot 0-of-6 and Eddie House shot 0-of-3 off the bench.