James gets help as Cavs take Game 1 in OT
The Associated Press
TORONTO — This time, LeBron James didn’t have to do it all by himself.
James had 26 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds for his 21st career playoff triple-double, J.R. Smith scored 20 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Toronto Raptors 113-112 in overtime on Tuesday to win Game 1 of their second-round playoff series.
Kyle Korver scored 19 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer in overtime after Cleveland never led in regulation. Tristan Thompson had 14 points and 12 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who have eliminated Toronto in each of the past two postseasons.
“My teammates were unbelievable tonight,” James said. “They stepped up when I wasn’t at my best.”
Jeff Green scored 16 points and Kevin Love had 13 rebounds.
James, who topped 40 points three times in seven games against Indiana in round one, shot 12-for-30 against Toronto, going 1-for-8 from 3-point range, and called it “probably one of my worst games of the season.”
Still, James came through when it counted, tying the score with two baskets in the final 92 seconds of regulation to complete Cleveland’s comeback from a double-digit deficit.
“It got to a one-possession, two-possession game,” James said. “That’s what I like the most.”
Toronto’s Fred VanVleet missed a 3-pointer with 3.4 seconds to go in overtime that could have won it for the Raptors, who couldn’t hold on after taking a 10-point lead early in the fourth quarter.
“He got a heck of a shot,” Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan said. “I’ll live with him shooting that shot 10 times out of 10. We got a good look and it just didn’t fall.”
Jonas Valanciunas had 21 points and 21 rebounds, Kyle Lowry had 18 points and 10 assists, and DeRozan scored 22 points for the Raptors, who host Game 2 on Thursday.
The Raptors shot 5-for-24 in the fourth quarter, missing their final 11 shot attempts in regulation.