His 9 consecutive points again kept the Celtics in the game when it looked like the Cavaliers were separating themselves. If Stevens' defense can slow down Lebron's supporting cast, limiting his assist totals and in turn forcing turnovers, he'll have to put up Michael Jordan scoring numbers on a nightly basis.
As the Bulls took care of the Knicks in four straight games and rallied out of the 2-0 hole, Jordan averaged 32.5 points, nine assists, and 6.5 rebounds.
After drilling another two free throws, Horford came right back and scored another bucket.
"I mean, we just play hard", Celtics forward Al Horford said.
Most teams do fall apart when James goes off like that at the beginning of a game, but Boston didn't lose its cool. Thompson had seven rebounds and eight points while Horford scored 15 points and pulled down 10 rebounds, proving that the matchup was not as close as hoped. The Cavs were outscored by 24 the rest of the way after the collision, losing 107-94 and falling down 2-0 in the series. That's quite remarkable considering the way that James erupted out of the gate. "You just can't allow that to keep happening". "Just make sure he didn't get it", Smith said. But I don't think it-it didn't affect my game after that. So, don't hang your head; go down and score. Marcus Morris got in Smith's face after Smith pushed Horford in the back to prevent a layup. We've got to help him and be effective. Led by the tenacious hustle of Marcus Smart and resilient energy of Terry Rozier, the Celtics blew by Cleveland to eventually take a double-digit lead in the fourth quarter.
Boston flurried just before the half, getting six points from Morris in the final minute to trim Cleveland's lead to 55-48 at the break.
The Cavs are heading back to Cleveland down 0-2 to the Celtics and staring down the possible ending of the LeBron James era. That's a commendable feat considering the way he opened up the game. "We've got a different team, just like they do, and a lot of younger guys. But [James] is unbelievable".
The Celtics were on the floor and very much in the lens of their followers. "We weathered the storm because it's easy to fall apart there". And all they do is keep winning.
Down seven at the half, after trailing as many as 11 in the second quarter, the Celtics made their charge in the third quarter behind Rozier and a relentless Garden-faithful fueled attack.
"One of my guys was down, and I took offense to it", Smart said.