Cavs rally from 25-point deficit to edge Celtics
Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) – LeBron James scored 38 points and led a
frantic Cleveland comeback, as the Cavaliers rallied from 25 points down in
the third quarter to post a dramatic 94-93 victory over the Celtics.
James made a living at the free throw line, making 19-of-23 shots, and also
pulled down eight rebounds to help the Cavaliers come back from a 19-point
deficit in the fourth quarter to beat Boston for a sixth straight time.
“We were just trying to dig down and get stops and we were able to do that,”
James said. “They were trying to play small ball and we had to go small, and
we were able to get stops, go out and run.”
Sasha Pavlovic contributed 14 points and Anderson Varejao had nine points and
10 rebounds for Cleveland, which won its second in a row and avoided disaster
at the end when Paul Pierce’s desperation three-pointer rimmed out.
Pierce had 19 points and nine rebounds for Boston, which fell to 1-5 to begin
“This game was ours if we kept playing the way we were playing,” Boston coach
Doc Rivers said. “When they attacked us I thought we reacted and got passive
and when you do that, you lose games.”
Tony Allen’s three-point play extended Boston’s lead to 82-63 with 10:16 left
in the fourth quarter, but the Cavaliers used a 24-3 blitz to go ahead.
Pavlovic’s three-pointer brought the Quicken Loans Arena crowd to its feet
with four minutes left with the Cavs cutting the deficit to 86-85.
Larry Hughes then blocked Sebastian Telfair’s layup try and hit a driving
layup at the other end to put the Cavs ahead, 87-86, with 3:30 left.
Cleveland led by as many as five points down the stretch. Two foul shots by
James made it 94-91 with 15 seconds left and Pierce then missed a tying three-
However, Varejao missed two foul shots and Pierce was intentionally fouled by
James with 1.7 seconds left to prevent the tying three-pointer. Pierce made
both foul shots, and accidentally made the second, banking it hard off the
James was then fouled and missed both shots with 1.2 seconds left. He also
tried to intentionally miss the second and did, and the Cavaliers celebrated
on the court as time ran out. However, officials waved both teams back on when
it was determined James’ second shot never hit the rim.
Boston’s Brian Scalabrine then inbounded to Pierce, who turned beyond the top
of the circle, but his shot circled off the rim.
The Cavaliers went 27-of-39 at the foul line to overcome 40.8 percent shooting
from the field.
Telfair, who was hospitalized Friday night after leaving a home game against
Utah due to shortness of breath, ended with 15 points. Kendrick Perkins had 12
points and 11 rebounds, while Delonte West scored 12 for Boston.
The Celtics scored the game’s first 11 points and bolted to a 25-10 lead after
one quarter. It was 48-34 at the half, and Boston moved to a seemingly
insurmountable 65-40 cushion with 7:21 left in the third following a Pierce
Boston shot 41 percent from the floor…Ryan Gomes had 11 points for the
Celtics…Hughes finished with nine points on 4-of-13 shooting.