The Cleveland Cavaliers were upset by the Boston Celtics, 111-108, in game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals, Sunday, May 21, 2017, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Celtics were without the services of star Isaiah Thomas. He is sidelined with a hip injury.
The Celtics hung with the Cavaliers for the first three minutes of the first quarter. Cleveland began to pull away with a superb offense and hot 3-point shooting.
Forward Kevin Love made five 3-point buckets in the first, one shy of an NBA record for a quarter. The period ended with the Cavaliers ahead, 35-24.
The hot shooting of the Cavaliers continued in the second quarter. They were especially accurate from 3-point land, making 14 of 22 attempts. Kevin Love was shooting threes at a 70 percent clip in the first half.
The Celtics had no answer for Cleveland’s offensive explosion. The first half ended with Cleveland leading by 16 points, 66-50.
Boston rallied in the third quarter. They began to exert good defense and display great shooting. About halfway through the period, the Celtics trailed by 21 points.
Then they went on, a remarkable, 26-10 run to finish the quarter trailing by only five points, 87-82 after shooting 6 for 10 from beyond the 3-point arc.
The Boston rally continued in the final stanza. They kept up the excellent shooting and fought to tie Cleveland 95-95, with 5:48 remaining in the game. The Celtics took the lead, 99-98, with 4:21 left. The Cavaliers retook the lead, 101-99, with 3:44 left in the period.
The final minutes showcased the determination and heart of the Celtics to produce an exciting finish. The last part of the final stanza featured four ties and three lead changes. Boston finished with an unlikely victory to get back into this series.
The Celtics were led in scoring by guard Marcus Smart with 27 points. Boston had six players finish in double figures in the hard-fought contest.
Cleveland’s leading scorer was Kyrie Irving with 29 points. Kevin Love added 28 points, while LeBron James was held to only 11 points in the loss.
The Cavaliers now lead the best-of-seven series 2-1. The Celtics will face the Cavaliers again on Tuesday, May 23, in Cleveland.
Written By D.T. Osborn
Edited by Cathy Milne
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Featured and Top Image Courtesy of D.T. Osborn