Victor Oladipo #4 of the Indiana Pacers shoots the ball against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game One of Round One of the 2018 NBA Playoffs on April 15, 2018 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Victor Oladipo had his fingerprints all over this game as he drained six threes to lead the team with 32 points, six rebounds, four assists and four steals.
LeBron James had a triple-double with 24 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds, but he was just 7-of-17 from the field and scored just four points in a crucial fourth quarter as the Pacers pulled away.
For the first time, it feels as if LeBron James won't be playing deep into June after the Cavaliers could do nothing to stop the Indiana Pacers and it ended with a 18-point blowout on their own home floor.
"I've always stayed even-keeled with the postseason", James said after the game, as per ESPN. Expected to be named the Most Improved Player in the National Basketball Association, he showed his athleticism and ability to dominate on both ends of the floor throughout Sunday's game.
A repeat of their disgusting defensive showing in game one won't give them a great chance to win so they'll have to come out with a sense of urgency and put in a better effort. "I expect the same thing in Wednesday's game".
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Stephenson, when asked about his contributions to the Pacers' emphatic 98-80 win, described his energy as "contagious". The Cavs just started off slow, which is why they lost the game.
"We've been playing like this all year", he said.
The Pacers jumped ahead 33-14 after the first quarter and led by as many as 23 points in holding off the Cavaliers, who came no closer than seven points the rest of the way.
The Cavaliers continued their push in the early stages of the final period, with James' layup with 10:29 to go in the game making it a seven-point contest at 76-69.
Instead, they have an inexperienced mix of players as the likes of Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. made their playoff debuts. The miserable loss made history for LeBron James as well, not all happy history either. Cleveland was down 19 after the opening quarter and despite their best efforts, couldn't throw a serious scare into IN the rest of the way. Myles Turner added 16 points while Bojan Bogdanovic chipped in with 15 points. Sooner than later, we are going to find out. Maybe it shows them some obvious adjustments to make moving forward. The teams split two previous playoff series with the Cavaliers holding a 5-4 edge in game victories. The Pacers easily could have won the game by a bigger margin had they cashed in at the charity stripe and capitalized more on Cleveland's miscues. "I'm just glad we got this first win". The media might have a field day with this and try to act like the Pacers will win, but they don't realize that one team has LeBron and the other one doesn't. "We've got to match their physicality starting off and just play with a better pace offensively". They have LeBron, after all, and they were on national television 39 times. He stood shoulder-to-shoulder with James, before rising up right in Jeff Green's face.