The victory, which many least expected because of the way the Cavs annihilated the Celtics in Games 3 and 4 to tie the series in their own house following Bostons twin triumphs at the Garden, pushed LeBon James and his teammates on the brink of elimination. Jeff Green was fantastic in Love's place with 14 points, and Larry Nance Jr. added 10 points and seven rebounds.
Terry Rozier had 28 points to pace the Celtics, who missed the first of two attempts to nail their first NBA Finals berth in 8 years. It feels like things might be lining up for the Celtics in this game, but absolutely nobody will be thinking about that. It's not about his age, he's always keeping his body in the right position in tonight's game. No one really knew why this was happening. We've got to come out ready to fight. The home team has won every game in this series. He didn't play at all in the first quarter, as the offense languished and shots repeatedly clanged off the rim.
If Boston eliminates Cleveland, this will be the first time that LeBron James has missed the National Basketball Association finals in eight years.
Was Korver sore from his face-first dive late Monday night, something he alluded to in the locker room after the game?
LeBron has scored 40 points and/or had a triple-double in six straight elimination games, winning five of them. Cleveland posted an offensive rebound rate of just 9.1% for the game, an extremely far cry from the 20.4% mark they'd posted throughout the series coming into the contest.
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When it comes to James, there is no middle ground: You either hate LeBron James or you love him. He's focused on different players throughout the playoffs such as Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell, but the most recent episode took a close look at Boston Celtics rookie Jayson Tatum.
"I have a drive", James said.
"I didn't get a good look at it either or I would've been able to avoid it", James said. "But I think just by doing that, it was a change that worked in our favor". The 42.3 minutes per game were the most he played in any of the six championship runs for the Bulls.
The first quarter of Game 5 ticked away with Kyle Korver, the Cleveland Cavaliers' third-leading scorer in the playoffs, plastered to the bench.
- Finally, if Tatum scores 41 more points, he'll set the new record for most postseason points by a rookie.