Celtics top Love-less Cavs: Eastern Conference Final Preview?

Marcus Smart coasting maneuvering through the Cavs defense in the first half. (Brian Babineax/Getty Images)

It was yet another great performance out of 2011’s 60th overall pick Isaiah Thomas as he continues to prove he is the real deal and so is his team. IT4, as fans love to call him, dropped 31 points on 50% shooting from the floor while adding 5 assists and 2 steals. Jae Crowder also helped the Cavs come out with a win as he added in 17 points of his own on 5/10 shooting to go along with 10 rebounds and 2 assists. Even role player, Kelly Olynyk got in on the action missing only one shot while scoring 10 points in just 18 minutes. The Celtics came out hot and stayed hot as they shot 46% from the field, 42% from three point range, and 78% from the line. Winning the game in the assists, rebounding, and steals category were helpful for Boston. It was just an overall great game for a Celtics team that is attempting to prove the have what it takes to be a force in the Eastern Conference as they finally take down the two-time reigning champion Cleveland Cavaliers.

Although the Celtics obviously looked phenomenal, the Cavs were not in prime shape. However, stars LeBron James and Kyrie Irving continued to show why they are one of if not the most potent duo in all of the NBA. LeBron continued to wear himself down (you would think) playing 40 minutes and recording a triple double with 28 points, 13 rebounds, and 10 assists. Simply another day at work for the King. Kyrie did Kyries thing, which as we all know is score dropping in 28 of his own but the main story was the absence of Kevin Love. It was easy to see that the Cavs would have liked to have him out there, instead having to go with veteran center Derrick WIlliams to fill his role. He was productive on the offensive end but only recorded 3 rebounds total which Love would have easily bested as he averages 10 a night. The Cavaliers didn’t look bad but the definitely weren’t at their best.

This is not the first time these two teams have met this season as the Cavaliers still hold the season series lead at 2–1 having taken the first two and it certainly is not the last. The two are set to face off April 5th in Boston one last time before the playoffs. With the Celtics now only 3 games back of Cleveland and a 1-seed in the East, this race could come down to the wire. No one saw this coming but don’t be surprised if Boston is facing off this Cavs team in the Eastern Conference Championship as the 1-seed.

Current Records: Cavaliers 1st in East (41–18), Celtics 2nd in East(39–22)

Final Score: Celtics 103, Cavs 99

Players of the Game: Isaiah Thomas (31 pts, 5 asts), LeBron James (28 pts, 13 rebs, 10 asts)