In the Cavs playoff home opener against the Victor Oladipo-led Indiana Pacers, the Cavs took a devastating 18 point loss and like clockwork NBA fans questioned LeBron‘s ability to lead the Cavaliers to a fourth straight finals appearance. Well, the questions may not be shut down completely, but LeBron certainly isn’t going to be the man in question.
The 15-year veteran and 3-time MVP dropped 46 points in the Cavs 97-100 win over the Pacers in game 2, 20 of which came in the first quarter. Right out the gate, LeBron’s first 16 points were the only points scored by the Cavaliers as they jumped out to an early lead.
LeBron’s 46 points came with 12 rebounds attached to it making this his 10th career 40 and 10 playoff game. James also dished out a team high 5 assists last night. Not much help came elsewhere on the Cavs lineup with Kevin Love having the next best effort on the team with 15 points and 8 rebounds. Love was also injured during the game with what Head coach Tyronn Lue says was a “jammed thumb.” Despite sitting for a lot of the game following the injury, Lue says Love is perfectly fine and will be back for game 3.
Indiana was down by as many as 18 points but kept clawing their way back into the game before ultimately losing by 3 points. Victor Oladipo led the Pacers with 22 points and 6 assists with some help from Myles Turner who added an 18 point, 5 rebound stat line.
Despite LeBron single-handedly taking control of things on the offensive side, Tyronn Lue is happy with the defensive effort from his team specifically with J.R. Smith who defended Oladipo for the majority of the game. The Cavs have held the Pacers under 100 points in both games in this series which Coach Lue said in a post game press conference is the key to beating Indiana.
With the series now tied at one game a piece, the Cavs will travel to Indiana to play two on the road before coming back home for a now guaranteed game 5.