Cavs Beat Celtics, Force Game 7
If the Boston Celtics are to go to the 2018 NBA Finals, all they'll have to do is do the one thing they've been dominant at doing so far this postseason; Win at home.
That's the case, following Boston's 109-99 loss to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals, Friday night.
The C's jumped out to an early lead, after a quarter of play.
A big second quarter from the Cavs, however, helped power Cleveland to the win and keep the series trend alive, with the home team winning by double digits.
As many expected, it was LeBron James putting his team on his back, scoring a game-high 46 points, on 17-33 shooting, while adding 11 boards and nine assists on the night. The game marked the seventh such time James has scored 40 or more points this postseason.
James wasn't alone, though, as he got solid contributions from veterans George Hill and former Celtic Jeff Green, who scored 20 and 14 points respectively. The Cavs also got a surprising boost from backup big man Larry Nance Jr., who was a perfect 5-5 from the field for 10 points, along with seven rebounds.
As for Boston, they got productive nights out of Jaylen Brown (27 points) and Terry Rozier (28 points), who combined for 51 points on the night. Rookie Jayson Tatum struggled early, but came on strong towards the end, finishing with 15 points.
Boston's big bugaboo, however, was a dismal scoring night from veteran forward Al Horford. Though he notched nine boards and added four assists, Horford scored just six points on 2-8 shooting and was really nonexistent on offense throughout the game.
So the series now shifts to a win-and-advance Game 7, which will be played at the TD Garden, Sunday night.
That should be music to the ears of the Celtics and their fans, as the C's are a perfect 10-0 at home this postseason.
To add to the confidence for Boston, Cleveland's top contributor not named LeBron James, Kevin Love, had to leave tonight's game early with a potential concussion.
Love did not return after his second quarter exit and it doesn't look overly promising, at this point, that the offensively active forward will be able to go just two days from now.
With Cleveland's other players basically doing nothing in the first three games at the Garden, it looks like it will take another huge game from James to knock off this scrappy Celtics team.
The bad news for Boston; James is more capable than anyone else in the league at replicating tonight's performance,m on the road Sunday night.