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Slow Start Leads Celtics to 117-104 Loss to Cleveland in Game 1

Thursday, May 18, 2017

 

LeBron James scored 38 points in Cleveland's win

The Boston Celtics got off to a slow start in game one of the Eastern Conference finals and it cost them.

The Celtics fell to the defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers 117-104 on Wednesday night at TD Garden in Boston. This is the Celtics first home playoff loss since game two of their first-round series against Chicago. 

Boston missed 11 of their first 14 shots and were 2 of 16 from three in the half.  

Isaiah Thomas and Al Horford combined for 12 points in the half allowing Cleveland to run away early. 

The Celtics now trail the series 1-0. 

Cleveland Dominates From Start

The Celtics trailed 8-7 following an Avery Bradley three with 8:33 left in the first quarter before the Cavaliers took control.

Cleveland would go on a 14-2 run capped off by a LeBron James layup with 4:16 to play in the quarter. James led Cleveland with 38 points in the game.

Later in the quarter, Boston would cut Cleveland's lead to seven, 24-17, following a layup by Jaylen Brown, but again Cleveland would retake control. 

From that point, the Cavaliers would go on a 12-3 run extending into the second quarter to take a 36-20 lead following a Kevin Love layup. 

The Cavaliers would take a 22 point lead, 61-39, into the half. 

Cleveland would open up their largest lead, 28 points, 67-39, early in the third quarter before Boston would find some energy. 

Celtics Find Energy 

Boston found some energy following a nose-to-nose confrontation between Boston's Marcus Smart and Cleveland's Tristan Thompson, which resulted in both players getting fouls. 

A short time later Smart would draw a foul on Thompson during a play under the Celtics basket in which Thompson knocked Smart to the floor while battling for a rebound. 

The Celtics would close the third quarter on an 11-3 run to cut Cleveland's lead to 92-75, before the Cavaliers would extend the lead back to 20. 

The Celtics would get as close as 11 points, 111-100, but that came with a minute to go. 

Game 2 set for Friday, May 19 at TD Garden.

Tip-off is at 8:30 p.m. 

 

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