FINAL: Cavs 101, Celtics 93
One of those typical regular season games that you folks out there saw this season, the difference being that this one was a bit saltier than usual.
The Celtics essentially were allowed to do anything they wanted in the first half. That was especially true in the case of Boston point guard Rajon Rondo who went into the locker room having tallied a double-double with 19 points in eight assists.
Coach Mike Brown adjusted well to that after the intermission, however. Anthony Parker went out on Rondo more and the result was he scored just eight points and had just four assists in the second half. The Cavs sent several guys at Rondo in fact and at times, Shaquille O'Neal swithched out on him and Rondo was forced to endure a couple of hard fouls, including one that would have been a cause for a double-take on any other night.
With Rondo contained, the easy points quit coming and the Celtics were outscored in the paint 32-18 in the second half. The Cavs held them to a mere 35 percent shooting in the second half as they were forced into primarily jump shot situations.
The difference for the Cavs offensively: Mo Williams, scored 14 of his 20 in the third quarter including a posterizing dunk on the Celtics' Paul Pierce that will be running on SportsCenter well into Monday.
LeBron James who played tentatively for much of the first half (35 points) and Shaquille O'Neal with 10 points in the fourth quarter also stepped things up significantly.
HALF: Celtics 54, Cavs 43.
Someone on press row already stated it. This couldn't be more of a thorough 11-point ass kicking.
Everything that the Cavs needed to do right, they've done wrong as the Celtics have beat them scoring in the paint 34-22 as they have let Rajon Rondo dictate the pace and tone of the game. Rondo has a near double-double (19 points, eight assists).
They're getting whacked on defense as the Cavs are shooting just 42 percent to Bostons's 54 percent. And to top it off they're shooting like garbage from the free throw line as well.
Cavs vs. Boston Celtics
Radio: WAKR (1590 AM); WTAM (1100 AM), WHBC (1480 AM)
Cavs: LeBron James (F); Antawn Jamison (F); Shaquille O'Neal (C); Anthony Parker (G); Mo Williams (G).
Celtics: Paul Pierce (F); Kevin Garnett (F); Kendrick Perkins (C); Ray Allen (G); Rajon Rondo (G).
Celtics: NONE. Officials: Eddie Rush, Jason Phillips and Bill Spooner.