Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry gametime decision for Game 3 against Cavaliers

Rachel Hardy
May 16, 2017

Cleveland went on a 17-1 run at the start of the fourth quarter to build their first double-digit lead of the game, and never looked back. The Cavs lead 3-0 and no team has ever dug out of such a hole in the National Basketball Association playoffs.

DeMar DeRozan was aggressive and getting buckets, Norman Powell was playing solid defense on LeBron James and forcing him into tough shots, Jonas Valanciunas was using his size to score, and as a team the Raptors were attacking the Cavaliers in smarter ways.

There has been some talk that this was a sign of disrespect to the Raptors, as James was basically treating the middle of a playoff game like a shootaround, but according to The King, he meant no disrespect.

LeBron had another unbelievable game.

3-Ball: The Cavs hit 13-of-23 three-point shots for 56.5 percent, led by Kyle Korver on 4-of-6 attempts.

Not only do the Cavs take a lot of threes (33.5 per game in the playoffs), they make a lot of threes (14.3 per game) at a high percentage (42.8%).

Casey feels that the Raptors can play themselves back into the series at home as they did last season, despite dropping the first game 116-105 followed by a 125-103 loss in Game 2.

The Cavaliers are the only team since the Minneapolis Lakers in 1949 and 1950 to win their first seven playoff games in consecutive seasons. Cleveland has won nine straight playoff games dating back to past year, and they might not suffer a loss anytime soon.

The Cavs then rolled through the fourth quarter, defeating Toronto, 115-94 for a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinals.

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This postseason, James is averaging 34.3 points, 9 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 2.4 steals and 1.6 blocks per game, averaging 56.6% the field and 48.6% from behind the arc.

They were without Kyle Lowry (22-point scorer), their star guard having sprained an ankle in Wednesday's Game 2.

"But I have all the confidence in the world in (backup point guard) Cory Joseph".

"I think three quarters last night we just played extremely aggressive and tried to take away everything we could take away", DeRozan said.

In this series, with open looks, with shots contested, the Raptors had no real answer. He went to the locker room to have his ankle re-taped and returned to start the second. Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving each finished with 16 points apiece, with Love picking up a double-double with 13 boards. The 3-point line has been the difference as the Cleveland are outscoring the Toronto by a total of 51 points. "Being down, being resilient, giving everything we got, and just fighting". He put up 37 points after scoring only 5 in the previous game.

Game 4 tips off at 3:30 p.m. EDT on Sunday.

So Game 3 was a night to remember for the veteran.

LBJ: After passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for second place on the NBA's all-time scoring list in playoffs games in Game Two, LeBron James now has his sights set on all-time leader Michael Jordan, who has 5,987 points.

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