He's doing even more now. That's what should bother the Cavs the most. It's the first time a LeBron James-led team has dropped the opening game of the first round of the playoffs. "They just played inspired basketball".
Pacers: Indiana has been eliminated by James four times in the past eight seasons. "It's only one game, it's only Game 1". They should have been called for delay of energy. But not all of them are good firsts.
With George last season, the Pacers got swept out of the first round by the Cavs and squandered a 26-point lead in Game 3. "We're planning on winning".
Trailing 33-14 after the first 12 minutes, the Cavs actually outscored IN 66-65 after the first quarter.
With Victor Oladipo leading the charge, the Pacers managed to secure a berth in the playoffs.
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It was all Pacers early on as IN started the game on a blazing 20-6 run, IN due part to the wine and gold not being able to find any rhythm offensively, and struggled to hit shots. They were more physical at the point of attack.
Oladipo said after Game 1 that he used these words as motivation for his huge year.
But there were red flags flapping everywhere in this Cavs loss. He also said that "experience is the best teacher" and he said that those players now have playoff experience [VIDEO]. Since James' return in 2014, the Cavaliers had won all 12 first-round games, with both that mark and James' streak of not having lost a first-round game since 2012 coming to an end. It'll be interesting to see if coach Tyronn Lue makes any changes before Game 2 on Wednesday.
James led all players with 44 minutes played - none more entertaining than when he was matched up against his old foe, Lance Stephenson. Lastly, the Rockets escaped with a three-point win over the Timberwolves.
The Pacers are feeling confident after beating the Cavs for the fourth time this season. They shot 23.5% from three and only had one starter in double figures.
The Cavs were 8-for-34 on 3-pointers.
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Minnesota scored four straight points to get within 3 with about 30 seconds left.
"Defensively, I thought we were pretty good". "Morris made some big shots, Tatum down the stretch, Terry - that's what we're all about".
"We believe that we can win", Oladipo said.
"They were more aggressive", James said. "In this league, you've got to score the ball". IN led by 17 at halftime with Oladipo mostly shooting from outside; he didn't really begin attacking until the second half, blowing by the likes of Kevin Love easily. That resulted in a whopping 16 Cavs turnovers.
Game 2 is Tuesday night in Boston. He's already shut up critics through his play this year.
"We've been playing like this all year".
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But Sunday was far from pretty. But that inexperience in the postseason didn't seem to bother Indiana. "Right now, I'm focused on Game 2". It was his first playoff game with the Thunder since being acquired in a trade with in in the offseason. "We need to be more mind-ready". Among that group was Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, who said the Pacers could have done better.
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