Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

And Raptors looked near extinction

LeBron James had plenty to celebrate in the Cavaliers’ 115-84 rout Tuesday.

Getty Images

LeBron James had plenty to celebrate in the Cavaliers’ 115-84 rout Tuesday.

Dwane Casey was about an hour from coaching the Toronto Raptors in the opening game of the Eastern Conference Finals, but first he wanted to list some concerns.

The Cleveland Cavaliers, he said, were rested. LeBron James had turned into a pass-first facilitator. Kevin Love had shot a crazy percentage from 3-point range through the first two rounds of the NBA playoffs. J.R. Smith had committed to becoming a terrific defender. And the entire team had shown an ability to jump all over opponents in the first quarter.

Given this alarming set of factors, Casey sought to put a sunny spin on it.

"There shouldn't be any pressure on our guys," he said.

If the Raptors went into Game 1 on Tuesday night without any pressure, the Cavaliers made sure to provide some. It came in the form of dunks and 3-pointers, in blocked shots and swarming defense. The Cavaliers, who have yet to lose a game four weeks into the postseason, throttled the Raptors in a 115-84 victory at Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena.

Kyrie Irving scored 27 points, and James added 24. The Cavaliers shot 55.4 percent from the field to turn the whole evening into a glorified pickup game, though one with thousands of screaming fans, a national TV audience and a scoreboard known simply as Humongotron, which flashed an increasingly lopsided score.

The Cavaliers, who will host Game 2 tonight, led by 22 at halftime and by 28 at the end of the third quarter. DeMar DeRozan scored 18 points for the Raptors, who looked as if they had spent three months at sea before the game was 15 minutes old.

The Cavaliers and the Raptors took opposite paths to the conference finals. The Cavaliers swept their first two opponents and had a nine-day layoff. The Raptors, on the other hand, went the full seven games in each of the first two rounds.

The game got away from Toronto early in the second quarter. The Cavaliers' Channing Frye and Matthew Dellavedova came off the bench to drill back-to-back 3-pointers, and the lead was suddenly 11. Casey called a timeout. Unfortunately for the Raptors, the officiating crew allowed the Cavaliers to return to the court.

And Raptors looked near extinction 05/18/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 7:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, New York Times.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rowdies settle for draw at home

    Soccer

    ST. PETERSBURG — The good news for the Rowdies is that they still haven't lost a game at Al Lang Stadium since late April. The bad news is they had to settle for a 1-1 tie against Ottawa on Saturday night in front of 6,710 sweaty fans.

  2. Bats come to life, but Rays' freefall continues (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG —The six runs seemed like a ton, just the second time the Rays had scored that many in a game during their numbing two-plus-weeks stretch of offensive impotency, and amazingly, the first time at the Trop in nearly two months.

    Lucas Duda connects for a two-run home run in the sixth, getting the Rays within 7-5. A Logan Morrison home run in the ninth made it 7-6, but Tampa Bay couldn’t complete the comeback.
  3. Rays journal: Cesar Puello, who has one major-league game, claimed off waivers

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Looking to add punch to their right-handed lineup, the Rays claimed OF Cesar Puello off waivers Saturday from the Angels.

  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Mariners game

    The Heater

    SS Adeiny Hechavarria doesn't always look like he's going hard, but he showed impressive reactions Saturday in reversing field to catch a ball that clanked off the catwalk then firing to second to double up Guillermo Heredia on an attempt to tag up.

  5. Bucs journal: Simeon Rice gives master class on sacks to defensive ends

    Bucs

    TAMPA — As the Bucs seek their first 10-sack season from a player since Simeon Rice in 2005, who better to help that cause than Rice himself?

    Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers great Simeon Rice works with defensive end Noah Spence (57) after practice at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday, Aug. 19, 2017.