Cavs up 3-0 vs. Raptors

Cavs up 3-0 vs. Raptors

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) takes a shot as Toronto Raptors forward P.J. Tucker (2), center Jonas Valanciunas (17) and Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson (13) look on during second half National Basketball Association playo. The Boston Celtics finished two games ahead of the Cavs in the standings, and FiveThirtyEight's prediction model even gave the Raptors and Washington Wizards a better chance to win the title.

LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers will be visiting the Toronto Raptors for game 4 of the NBA's Eastern Conference playoffs on May 7th at 3:30pm EST. "But it is rewarding when you can advance. Like you're trying to son me, and I don't go for that". And once again I'm part of a team that's been able to advance to the Eastern Conference finals. “If is a huge world in that situation because this group hasnt had a training camp or time together to go against him. "I'll take those numbers".

In the eighth dominant performance by the King in eight games, James put up 35 points, six assists and nine rebounds as the Cavaliers beat the Toronto Raptors 109-102. Harden was superb throughout, recording game highs in points (28) and assists (12) to resuscitate an offensive attack that went silent as the Spurs rolled to victories in Games 2 and 3. The reserve scored 16 of the Cavs' 33 points in the period, making six of his seven field-goal attempts (4 of 6 from 3-point range).

There may be an opportunity to shed money by trading Valanciunas, clearing the way for one of the younger options if Toronto feels like they can take over in his place. The Cavs will be well rested after their short series against the Raptors, and neither the Celtics nor the Wizards have the defense to slow down James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.

"We knew once we were healthy we could go on runs like this", Lue said.

Serge Ibaka led the Raptors with 23 points, DeMar DeRozan scored 22, while Cory Joseph had 20 points and 12 assists.

And James had more than enough help, from Kyle Korver in Games 3 and 4, from Channing Frye, from Kyrie Irving, who scored 11 consecutive points in the fourth quarter to save his team from a Game 5 Tuesday. The long-standing criticism of Irving's game - besides his defense, in which I show my own predisposition for insanity by hoping this is the game we see it - is his one-dimensional offensive game.

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“Its hard to say, ” Casey said when asked how close the Raptors team, as now constructed, were to making a legitimate run at the Cavs.

Making his second start in place of injured point guard Kyle Lowry, Cory Joseph had 20 points and 12 assists for Toronto, which lost in six games against Cleveland previous year in the Conference Finals. The defending champions haven't lost a post-season game since falling behind Golden State 3-1. The Raptors responded, and a three in front of Cleveland's bench cut the deficit to five points with 25 seconds left, but a pair of Korver free throws sealed the Raptors' fate. "We have some positives", Dwane Casey said on Thursday. "We're just riding him right now".

"You have to give them credit, they are a heck of a 3-point-shooting team", DeRozan said.

Down 2-0 in their best-of-seven series to the Cavaliers, the Raptors returned home after Wednesday's Game 2 loss in search of answers.

James, who entered the league out of high school in 2003, has long since secured his status as a surefire Hall of Famer but the Cleveland Cavaliers forward still shifts into a higher gear come playoff time.

FanRag Sports' Jason Patt opined in the Game 3 recap, "The absence of (Kyle) Lowry was definitely felt, but at this point, it's obvious the Raptors can't hang with the Cavaliers no matter what". He was not active Sunday.

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