Cleveland Cavaliers at Toronto Raptors - 5/5/17 NBA Playoffs Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Posted May 16, 2017

If they'd been able to hit a 3 (they were 0-for-12 before nailing their first one late in the third), Toronto might have been able to score at least a TKO.

LeBron James scored 35 points as the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Toronto Raptors 115-94 Friday to take a 3-0 stranglehold lead in their second round National Basketball Association playoff series. As it happened, that was the second alcohol-related moment in this series for James, who apparently feels about as threatened by the Raptors as a bouncer does by a cocktail fork.

The Raptors were relieved to be back at Air Canada Centre after being routed by a combined 33 points in Games 1 and 2 in Cleveland, buoyed by the fact they were in the same position last season - losing two in Cleveland, then bouncing back to win two.

LeBron James' sensational form in the NBA Playoffs has continued with a 35-point haul against Toronto on Friday night. "I don't think about the past or the future", he said.

"We're coming home, let's take care of home", Casey said. We broke down in a lot of areas where we should have been better.

Things fell apart in the fourth as the Cavaliers found another gear and the Raptors struggled to contain their offence after doing a solid job through the first three quarters.

Joseph had 22 points on Wednesday, but much of it was in the fourth quarter after both coaches had emptied their benches.

"It's about us", Casey said.

Those two were just as helpless as the rest of the Raptors, who watched the Cavs go on a 17-1 fourth-quarter run to take a 99-80 lead with 5:47 remaining. Perhaps most impressive, James was a relentless 15-of-16 at the foul line, the only recent hole in his game.

James Harden scored 43 points for Houston.

It was a similar story in Game 1, with James instructing point guard Kyrie Irving to toss the ball off the backboard for an alley-oop dunk you'd normally only see in an all-star game. DeMar DeRozan led Toronto with 37 points while Jonas Valanciunas added 19 points and eight rebounds. They finished just 2-of-18 (.111 pct.) from long range.

The Raptors missed their first dozen three-point attempts, yet still they were hanging with the Cavs point for point. After connecting on 53 percent from the field in the opening 12 minutes, Cleveland's touch went ice-cold as they hit on just 32 percent of their field goals in the second period.

Dominating the Raptors is nothing new for James and the Cavs.

All told, Toronto's reserves had just nine points to the 30 Cleveland's bench provided. The Cavs went scoreless for a span of 2:34, which also included two James turnovers.

No Lowry: Kyle Lowry was active for Game Three, but he did not play due to an ankle sprain suffered in Game Two. They can bid adieu to the Raptors by taking Sunday's Game 4.

After getting treatment nearly all of Thursday and most of Friday, Lowry tried to go through the pre-game layup line but left after just a few minutes.