The Eastern Conference Finals are going to a Game 7. The Cavaliers saved their season for a just few more days after a 109-96 win at home against the Celtics.
LeBron James led all scorers with 46 points(!!!!), 11 rebounds, 9 assists, 3 steals, and a block. James also went 5-7 from three, including back to back threes late in the fourth quarter that propelled the Cavaliers to victory. Jeff Green also had a good game off the bench, putting up 14 points.
Jayson Tatum, Terry Rozier, and Jaylen Brown combined for 70 points but it wasn’t enough for the Celtics. Al Horford only had 6 points and Boston needs him to perform to win, period. Marcus Smart was a defensive force tonight as usual and accompanied him 10 points with 8 assists.
Game 7 can go either way. The Cavaliers are playing good team basketball, even though some of their players are showing fatigue. The jury is still out on Kevin Love however, who left Game 6 earlier with an apparent head injury.
FINAL: Cavaliers 109, Celtics 99
Cavaliers 106, Celtics 97 (01:40 4Q)
Looks like the Cavaliers are pulling away in this one. LeBron James has hit back to back threes in the final 5 minutes.
Cavaliers 83, Celtics 93 (07:00 4Q)
There have been a lot of scary moments in this game, but prob none more frightening for Cleveland fans than this moment.
LeBron James is clearly hurt, but he’s still on the floor, trying to push the Cavs to victory.
Cavaliers 87, Celtics 80 (9:38 4Q)
Both teams are starting to trade buckets as this one closes out. Terry Rozier is putting the Celtics on his back to try to tie this one up. He’s got 28.
Cavaliers 83, Celtics 73 (End of 3Q)
The Celtics are battling back as much as they can. If the Celtics want to close this one out, they’ll need a huge fourth quarter from Rozier, Brown, and Horford.
Cavaliers 65, Celtics 52 (7:18, 3Q)
More of the same so far in the third quarter. LeBron James is doing it all with 28 points, six rebounds, five assists and this emphatic block:
Cleveland has nine blocks in the game.
Kevin Love, who left the game early in the first quarter, is out for the remainder of Game 6.
UPDATE: Per #Cavs Kevin Love experienced a hit to the head. Is continuing to be evaluated for a concussion & so as a precaution, he will be held out of play for the remainder of tonight’s game.— Allie Clifton (@FSOAllieOop) May 26, 2018
Cavaliers 54, Celtics 43 (halftime)
A stellar second quarter gave Cleveland a double-digit advantage, especially with the group of Jeff Green, Kyle Korver, Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. teaming with LeBron James. It was James who led everyone with 25 points, but the Cavs bench chipped in with 20 points, too.
In a series in which one of the storylines has been just how tired LeBron is, James played all 24 minutes in the first half and is averaging over 40 minutes a game during this postseason. He is quite good in elimination games, after all.
I want to hate everything about this LeBron commercial, but then the umpire calls, “SPEEEEEEE-RITE” and I’m back in.
Cavaliers 44, Celtics 34 (4:59, 2Q)
The Celtics have seven turnovers and the Cavs have taken advantage, energized by a bench that has scored 18 points so far. Cleveland is up 24-9 through seven minutes of the second quarter.
Cavaliers 40, Celtics 33 (6:29, 2Q)
NBA veteran Kendrick Perkins did a good bit of coaching, or at least yelling from the Cavaliers sideline on this defensive play.
Good recognition by Kendrick Perkins on the bench that last defensive sequence. From my vantage point, looked like he yelled at Kyle to stay home on Jaylen Brown and then yelled to Jeff Green when to come over for help, leading to the Green block on Brown in the paint— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) May 26, 2018
Cavaliers 34, Celtics 33 (7:58, 2Q)
Cleveland is hanging around with just one starter on the floor, though it helps when that one starter is LeBron James, who found Jeff Green with a pair of dunks.
Montana to Rice, Manning to Harrison, LeBron to Green.
Celtics 25, Cavaliers 20 (End 1Q)
Boston shot 61% in the opening quarter and got 15 points from Jaylen Brown, who made 6-of-8 field goals and a pair of threes.
LeBron James scored eight to lead Cleveland. The Cavaliers were without Kevin Love for the final seven minutes of the quarter.
Celtics 14, Cavaliers 13 (3:44, 1Q)
Kevin Love bumped heads with Jayson Tatum and immediately fell to the court. Love stayed down momentarily before exiting the game under his own power. He left to the locker room.
Love suffered a similar injury near the end of the regular season in March and was in the NBA’s concussion protocol.
While the Celtics are wearing white on the road in Cleveland, Cavs fans were presented with white shirts in the stands, hoping it doesn’t represent a white flag in this elimination game.
The Boston Celtics are one win away from their first NBA Finals trip in eight years, but to secure that berth on Friday they will need to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers on the road in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals at Quicken Loans Arena (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).
A balanced scoring effort and stellar defense on Wednesday gave the Celtics a 96-83 in Game 5, and improved Boston to 10-0 at home this postseason. But the Celtics are just 1-6 on the road this season, including two losses in Cleveland in this series.
Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 24 points in Game 5 and is averaging 18.4 points per game in his first playoffs. His 312 points are fourth-most by a rookie in the NBA playoffs, trailing only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Alvan Adams, and Elgin Baylor.
“I just enjoy playing in the big moments, in the big games. That’s when I have the most fun,” Tatum told the Associated Press. “I can’t say it enough: We’re one win away from being in the finals,” Tatum said. “The playoffs bring the best out of people.”
LeBron James is averaging 30.8 points during the series and on Thursday was named to the All-NBA first team for a record 12th time, including the last 11 seasons in a row. James needs two wins in this series to keep a remarkable streak alive: his teams have won 23 consecutive Eastern Conference playoff series, dating back to 2011.
LeBron’s last playoff series loss to an Eastern Conference team was in 2010, to the Celtics.
Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game 6 info
Location: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland
Game time: 8:30 p.m. ET
Announcers: Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy, Mark Jackson, Doris Burke
Online streaming: Watch ESPN