Following an awful performance to open up the Eastern Conference Finals on Mother's Day, the pressure is on LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to respond in game two Tuesday night.
After taking an early 7-4 lead, the Cavaliers surrendered a 17-0 Boston Celtics run to basically put the game away. Boston would cruise to a 108-83 win and a 1-0 series lead.
“I think they had a great game plan in game one,” James said following the game. “They did a great job of communicating the whole game. Brad (Stevens) and the coaching staff did a great job in game one in making us uncomfortable, making myself off balanced, not have a rhythm all game. We'll be much better in game two.”
James certainly had no rhythm in game one. LeBron shot just five of 16 from the field and missed all five of his three point attempts. Marcus Morris and the Celtics defense held James to just 15 points. James' six game playoff winning streak against the Celtics has come to an end.
“For me, game one is always a feel out game,” James said. “I got a good sense of the way they played me today and how I'll play them going into game two.”
LeBron didn't get much support from the rest of the starting five. Kevin Love was the only other Cavaliers starter to finish in double figures. Love lead the Cavaliers with 17 points.
The three point shot was nonexistent in game one. Cleveland missed their first 13 shots from behind the arc. The Cavaliers finished four of 26 from downtown. Cleveland shot 36 percent from the field for the game.
“Three point shots is part of our DNA,” James said. “It makes us the best team we can be. I think even early on we had some wide open looks that just didn't go. We're ok with that. We're going to take those same looks going into game two.”
LeBron and the Cavaliers will need to defend Al Horford, Jaylon Brown and Morris much better in game two. Brown scored a game high 23 points. Horford added 20. Four of the Celtics starting five finished in double figures. Morris recorded a double double, 21 points and ten rebounds.