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James, Cavs hold off Pacers to sweep series
October 19 2017, 11:47 | Van Peters
That was LeBron James, just over three-months ago.
The Cleveland Cavaliers pulled off the greatest halftime comeback in the National Basketball Association playoffs history, climbing back from 25 points down to win 119-114 and go up 3-0 in their first round series against Indiana.
The Raptors and Bucks are tied at two games apiece after Toronto's 87-76 win in Milwaukee on Saturday.
But those examples pale in comparison to the hard lessons they've been getting from LeBron James, who has beaten in in seemingly every way possible this series.
In the end, it was too much LeBron James (41 points, 13 rebounds, 14 assists) and not enough Paul George as the Cavs took a 3-0 series lead.
Isaiah Thomas poured in 33 points and the Celtics tied their series at two games apiece by getting past the Bulls, 104-95 in Chicago.
Lance Stephenson scored 22 points and Paul George added 15 but missed a late 3-pointer that could have forced overtime. He made 1 of 2 free throws to account for the final score.
At Oklahoma City, Eric Gordon and Lou Williams scored 18 points each and Nene delivered a team-high 28 as the Rockets now have a chance to close out the series Tuesday at home.
And this time, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irvin got a firsthand glimpse of James' mastery as they watched the entire fourth quarter from the bench. Russell against Houston. I don't want to hear that. "They were awesome. They had us going insane on the bench", added Irving. "That's all that matters", he said.
"I think we came out and we showed heart". One after another, James has run through the teams standing in his way, batting aside all comers with barely a second thought.
After giving up 74 points in the first half, the Cavs got back in the game in the third quarter as James poured in 13 points along with four assists.
He was just 5 of 17 from the field in the second half. "In the fourth quarter, we missed a lot of shots".
The King is now 12-0 in his career in first-round series and won each of his last 21 first-round games, dating back to his four straight trips to the NBA Finals with the Miami Heat. The Thunder said Westbrook joined Wilt Chamberlain as the only players to claim three consecutive playoff triple-doubles. For almost the entire game, it looked like the Pacers would put a win on the board, but LeBron James and the Cavaliers had other plans.
The best-of-seven series resumes Wednesday.
Thomas' life changed just over a week ago when his younger sister Chyna was killed in a one-car crash in their home state of Washington.
"Hold on Steven", Westbrook said. "It's been really incredible".
The Cleveland Cavaliers are now just one win away from moving onto the second round after coming all the way back from a 26-point deficit to stun the Pacers in a 119-114 win in Game 3.
Try as they might, the Indiana Pacers can't find a way to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Jimmy Butler had 33 points and nine assists for the Bulls, who continued to struggle offensively without injured point guard Rajon Rondo.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Joe Johnson scored 28 points, and the Jazz beat the Clippers to even their first-round playoff series at 2-all.