CLEVELAND, OH, Sporting Alert — LeBron James had 35 points and 10 rebounds and the Cleveland Cavaliers stayed 100-percent in postseason play this term with a 116-105 victory over the Toronto Raptors in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semi-finals on Monday night.
“That was the mystery coming in, how we would come out,” James said. “But the energy was phenomenal … it was a great start for us.”
According to NBA Stats and Info, James has now matched Charles Barkley for the 12th most double-doubles in NBA Playoffs history with 92.
“As a team, I think we had great energy, and even some of the mistakes that we had we were able to cover up for because our energy level was high,” said James, who last played seven days ago when the Cavs swept the Pacers in the first round.
“But we’ll be a lot better on Wednesday.”
Kyrie Irving added 24 points and 10 assists and Kevin Love ended with 18 points and nine rebounds for the Cavaliers, who blew the game open in the third quarter at the Quicken Loans Arena.
Tristan Thompson finished with 11 points and 14 rebounds for Cleveland, which shot 45.9 percent from the floor overall and 41.2 percent from 3-pointer.
Kyle Lowry had 20 points and 11 assists for the Raptors.
“It seems the same [as last season],” Lowry said. “They get big spurts, and we fight back. We have to find ways to eliminate the spurts.”
DeMar DeRozan added 19 points and seven rebounds in the defeat, but struggled shooting the ball and was just 7-of-16 from the field.
Also scoring in double figures were Serge Ibaka with 15 points, while reserve P.J Tucker ended with 11 points and 13 rebounds and Norman Powell also chipped in with 12 points off the bench.
As a team, Toronto shot 43.8 percent from the field on 39-of-89 shooting.
Game 2 is Wednesday night again in Cleveland.