PISTONS 91 - CAVS 101

Cavaliers have Pistons on ropes

LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love were to the fore as the Cleveland Cavaliers established a 3-0 playoff lead over the Detroit Pistons.
Final NBA: Cavs vs Warriors, juego 2

Cavaliers have Pistons on ropes
AFP

LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love combined for 66 points as the Cleveland Cavaliers took a 3-0 stranglehold lead over the Detroit Pistons with a 101-91 playoff win on Friday.

Kyrie Irving scored a team high 26 points as all three of the Cavaliers stars reached double figures by halftime in the road victory.

It was the fourth time this season Cleveland's marquee trio have scored at least 20 points each.

James finished with 20 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists and extended his first round win streak to 16 straight games. He is aiming for a fourth consecutive first round playoff sweep.

The top-seeded Cavaliers can close out the Eastern Conference series in game four in Detroit against the Pistons on Sunday night.

Tristan Thompson finished with eight points and 10 rebounds and Matthew Dellavedova added 12 points for Cleveland, which made 12 of 29 three-pointers after tying the league playoff record with 20 threes in game two.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had 18 points and Marcus Morris scored 16 for the Pistons. Andre Drummond added 17 points and seven rebounds, and Reggie Jackson was held to 13 points.

Detroit scored seven straight points in the third quarter to take a three-point lead. Cleveland responded with a 6-0 burst, then stretched its lead to six late in the quarter.

J.R. Smith and Love made three-pointers to give Cleveland a 73-69 edge. Thompson scored the Cavs' next four points on an easy tip-in and a dunk.

Cleveland took a 79-73 lead into the fourth quarter. James scored six points in the opening minute of the final quarter on a three-point play and another from beyond the arc to make it 85-76.

The Boston Celtics breathed life into their playoff hopes by holding on to defeat the host Atlanta Hawks 111-103.

Boston won despite blowing a 19-point third quarter lead, giving coach Brad Stevens his first career NBA postseason victory.

Isaiah Thomas scored a career high 42 points for the Celtics who cut the Hawks best-of-seven series lead to 2-1.

Game four is set for Sunday at the Boston Garden.