The defending NBA Champion Cavaliers host Game 4 of the East Finals against the Boston Celtics on Tuesday night. Tipoff from Quicken Loans Arena is at 8:30 p.m. (ET).
The Wine and Gold will look to bounce back following Sunday night’s 111-108 loss in Game 3. Despite the loss, all Cavalier starters scored in double figures (Kyrie Irving-29, Kevin Love-28, Tristan Thompson-18, J.R. Smith-13, LeBron James-11).
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The Cavs nailed 16 three-pointers in Game 3 against Boston, including nine triples in the first quarter, which was one shy of the franchise playoff record for threes made in a quarter (10 in 2nd Q vs. ATL on 5/4/16).
The Cavaliers have scored at least 100 points in all 11 playoff games, joining this year’s Warriors as the only teams in NBA history to score 100+ points in each of their first 11 postseason games. In the ECF series, the Cavs are averaging 118.3 points.
Overall, Cleveland ranks 2nd in the NBA Playoffs in points per game (115.3) and field goal percentage (.494), while leading all postseason teams in three-point percentage (.430), offensive rating (119.4) and three-pointers made per game (14.6).
Boston aims to tie the series and steal back homecourt before the series shifts back to Boston on Thursday for Game 5. Without their All-Star floor general, Isaiah Thomas (strained right hip), the Celtics got a big boost from the man who replaced Thomas in the starting lineup, Marcus Smart. The third-year guard from Oklahoma State recorded a playoff career-high with 27 points on 8-14 (.571) shooting and a 7-10 (.700) clip on three-pointers, five rebounds and a game-high tying seven assists.
Cleveland hopes to regain momentum in front of their home crowd on Tuesday night. Including this postseason, the Cavs have won 13 of the last 15 playoff games at Quicken Loans Arena.
Where to Catch the Action
TV: NBA on TNT
Radio: WTAM 1100, 87.7 La Mega
Programming Note: On Thursday, FOX Sports Ohio is carrying the Reds-Orioles game (7:00 p.m.), Blue Jackets–Penguins playoff game (7:00 p.m.), and the Cavs–Pacers game (7:00 p.m.). To view TV listings, CLICK HERE.–>
For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike, @ElalcaldeRafa and @chones22 on Twitter.
Probable Starters/Status Update*
#2 – Kyrie Irving
#5 – J.R. Smith
#23 – LeBron James
#0 – Kevin Love
#13 – Tristan Thompson
#36 Marcus Smart
#0 – Avery Bradley
#99 – Jae Crowder
#30 – Gerald Green
#42 – Al Horford
Status Update: (Cavs) – Edy Tavares (Right Hand Fracture, Out)
Status Update: (Celtics) – Isaiah Thomas (Strained Right Hip, Out)
*Subject to change.
In the ECF this year, Kevin Love has three double-doubles and is averaging 27.0 points and 11.3 rebounds, while shooting .522 (24-46) from the field, .548 (17-31) from three-point range and .842 (16-19) from the foul line, in 32.0 minutes per game. In Game 3, he drained seven three-pointers in the first half and finished with 28 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two blocks in 36 minutes. His seven threes in the opening half set a franchise playoff record for three-pointers made in a single half (previously six by J.R. Smith in 1st H vs. ATL on 5/4/16) and was one shy of tying the NBA postseason record for triples in a half (eight by Vince Carter in 1st H vs. PHI on 5/11/01). (Elias Sports Bureau)
Kyrie Irving had a game-high 29 points on 10-15 (.667) shooting, including 4-6 (.667) clip from deep, a game-high tying seven assists and a steal in 40 minutes in Game 3. Over the last two games, Irving is averaging 26.0 points on .692 (18-26) shooting from the field and 7-12 (.583) from beyond the arc, and 5.0 assists in 35.0 minutes. He has also now scored 20 or more points eight times this postseason.
Tristan Thompson posted his 2nd double-double of the 2017 postseason (14th of playoff career) with 18 points, a game-high 13 rebounds (seven offensive) and a block in 42 minutes in Game 3 against the Celtics. He also shot 12-15 (.800) from the foul line, setting a career-high in free throws made (regular season and postseason). This series, Thompson is averaging 15.0 points on .813 (13-16) shooting from the field and 8.0 rebounds in 34.0 minutes.
LeBron James has scored at least 25 points in 10 of 11 games this postseason and leads all remaining 2017 NBA Playoff players with 32.2 points per game.
The series shifts back to Beantown on Thursday for Game 5. If necessary, it’s back at The Q for Game 6 on Saturday and next Monday night in Boston if it goes the distance.
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