Cavaliers take 3-0 series lead over Raptors

Cavaliers take 3-0 series lead over Raptors

The Toronto Raptors return home down 2-0 to the Cleveland Cavaliers just as they did a year ago, although this time it is the Eastern Conference semifinal, not the final. The lead continued to stretch, as the Cavs locked down the Raptors on defense and the lead continued to grow, slowly ballooning from a 2 point lead to a game-high 23 point lead as the quarter progressed and quickly put the game out of reach for the Raptors.

The Raptors missed their first 12 3-point shots, and in the process missed a chance to take advantage of the Cavs going through a bit of an offensive malaise in the middle of the game.

On a night all-star point guard Kyle Lowry sat on the bench nursing a sprained ankle, DeMar DeRozan's best playoff game of his career wasn't enough.

"I don't think the officials saw that part of it", Casey said of Thompson's shove. "We knew they were going to give us their best shot. The goal is just to play, I have to wait". "I thought he had some of the same looks once he came back in but he was drained".

As the team's leading three-point shooter at 41% through the regular season, even with a bad ankle Lowry probably would have helped had he been able to play.

"It sucks", Lowry said.

The Raps trailed 28-24 by the end of the quarter, and Delon Wright - not Lowry - was the point guard subbed in for Joseph. Through three quarters it nearly did. The Raptors are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up loss and 6-0 ATS in their last 6 home games following a road trip of 7 or more days.

Raptors: DeRozan missed his first nine shots.

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DeMar DeRozan recorded 37 points but his side are staring down the barrel, with game four on Sunday. "When he's on the floor, it helps all of us, because he just creates more space".

And without the win, the redemption obviously wasn't very satisfying. "So for us not to have him anything close to 100%, it would be hard on us".

"We don't need to be thinking about a sweep or getting rest, we need to be thinking about what we need to do to execute defensively and offensively coming into Sunday", James said. Bismack Biyombo wasn't there to turn to when they needed him most, and the Raptors had no one waiting in the wings to fill his shoes. Cleveland had just 15 assists, but had 16 turnovers.

The Rockets' three-man bench of Eric Gordon, Nene and Lou Williams combined for 10 points on three-of-19 shooting. He scored 21 points in the first half, hitting 7 of 12 from the field and all seven of his free throw attempts. The last time was February 8-14, before the acquisitions of Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker, brought in via trade to improve the Raptors defense against the Cavs in the playoffs.

Forward LeBron James scored 35 points as the Cavaliers topped the.

"It's something we've done, we've knocked down threes all year and for some reason it's escaped us right now", Casey said. "Next man mentality and we're all playing good together". If you're going to knock out the champ, you've got to knock him out. He had the same looks but he was drained. "He did an excellent job of bouncing back". The Cavaliers went on to win the series in six games.

The Cavaliers were sloppy with the ball in the first half and they didn't rain down 3's as often as they did at Quicken Loans Arena in the first two games of the series. Avoiding the sweep this time around will be no less of a chore.