The Cavs have clearly been the better team in the series as they tend to always break away just when the Pistons look threatening, but I’m taking the points in this one as I think this game is going down to the wire.
Kawhi Leonard scored 32 points, and the San Antonio Spurs beat the Memphis Grizzlies 96-87 to take a 3-0 lead in its Western Conference first-round series.
Matthew Dellavedova scored 12 points and dished out five assists off the bench for the Cavs, with Tristan Thompson pulling down 10 boards.
The country Victorian also showed plenty of finesse, highlighted by a running jump shot early in the fourth quarter that split the Pistons’ defence.
The top-seeded Cavaliers received seven 3-pointers by shooting guard J.R. Smith and four from point guard Kyrie Irving in the 20-of-38 shooting effort.
“It was a great environment tonight”, said Cavaliers small forward LeBron James, who had 20 points, a game-high 13 rebounds and seven assists.
Reggie Jackson #1 of the Detroit Pistons tries to get around the defense of Iman Shumpert #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second quarter during game three of the NBA Eastern Conference quarterfinals at the Palace of Auburn Hills on April 22, 2016 in Auburn Hills, Michigan.
Coupled that with the fact that LeBron James’ teams have won 16 consecutive first-round games – and is on the verge of recording a fourth straight first-round sweep – it seems like all hope is lost. Physically he felt good, he said, but his explosion and change of direction were “awful” because he was rusty.
And on the second game, the three-point game was on for the Cavaliers as they matched a playoff record of 20 made three point attempts to dominate the Pistons 107-90. Cleveland responded with a 6-0 burst, then stretched its lead to six late in the quarter.
“Me and Larry Drew was playing with it before the game and I said we have to be able to burn them on the counter with this because they are jamming the guy from out of bounds”.
In the postseason, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope leads in points with 17.0 while Andrew Drummond tops in rebounds with 9.0 per game. In addition to 13 points, Jackson also contributed 12 assists.
Detroit had one final run left in them in the fourth quarter, trying to salvage the series, but one player who missed most of that run was Andre Drummond who sat the second half of the fourth because the Cavs went to hack-a-Dre. You’ve just got opportunities to foul him.
The Detroit Pistons fought hard in Game 3 vs. the Cavaliers on Friday.
BOSTON (111): Crowder 1-11 1-4 4, Jerebko 5-12 0-0 11, Johnson 7-8 1-2 15, Thomas 12-24 13-15 42, Turner 6-14 4-6 17, Sullinger 1-2 2-2 4, Smart 3-6 3-4 11, Hunter 1-1 0-0 2, Rozier 2-4 0-0 5.
Jeff Teague was the star for the Hawks, netting 23 points.