In NBA history, there have been 26 teams to win the first two games on the road in a seven-game series, and 22 of them have gone on to win the series.
But in a post-season that was supposed to be so different, on the heels of a heady regular-season that had shattered franchise records, the storyline Thursday night was way too familiar. On Thursday night, the Raptors fell apart in the second half of Game 2 against the Cleveland Cavaliers and were routed 128-110 at Air Canada Center to fall behind 2-0 in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. In fact, DeRozan believes there's a way back for the Raptors.
"We thrive on adversity", said DeMar DeRozan.
"When you play a Game 7 on your home floor and you have the best player in the world, you like your chances", said Lue. That's what point we're at now. "We understand where we're at and we're going to fight". James scored 27 points after the break, as Cavs built an insurmountable lead.
The city of Cleveland has been generally a house of horrors for Toronto over the years, especially in the playoffs.
Love said he knew at the morning shootaround that James was locked in when he predicted some of the improbable jump shots. While Boston played well enough to get past the Bucks, the 76ers had much more firepower than Milwaukee. "He's part of the reason why I am who I am today".
Kyle Lowry disappeared after halftime, scoring just three points in the final two quarters. "I've just got to focus on it". "It's a moment where you start thinking a lot, 'I wish I could be out there playing the best game I can to help my team.' It sucks, man". Love added nine as the Cavs took a 98-87 lead to the fourth.
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Having topped the Eastern Conference this season, the Raptors arrived into the series as favorites, particularly given the lack of support LeBron received from his supporting cast in the first-round, but now stare at the prospect of being swept away. The Raptors would pull within 13 points on a basket by Valanciunas midway through the period.
Everyone seems to be taking their shots.
"He can't play Superman every night", Smith said of James. The top-seeded Raptors have some serious work to do if they're going to win the series.
It's hard to blame Toronto fans for fearing the worst because the Raptors have never overcome a 0-2 postseason deficit and are 9-1 at The Q over the past three seasons.
The good times continued to roll for the Celtics in the third quarter. James knew his shot was falling, and he knew the Raptors were in trouble.
Toronto was favored at the onset of this series, but now are 10-2 against in the postseason against the Cavs over the past three seasons, and have lost eight straight.
The Raptors turned the ball over 11 times in the game, and often they did it at crucial junctures - continuing a disturbing theme from game 1.