Boston At Cleveland
When: 7:00 PM
ET, Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Where: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio
Kyrie Irving hopes to be back in action while fellow All-Star LeBron James simply wants to rediscover his stroke from the line when Cleveland hosts Boston on Tuesday. As Irving sat out his second straight game with a shoulder strain Sunday in Houston, James scored a game-high 37 points but also played the goat with a miserable performance at the charity stripe. The superstar went 3-of-11 from the line, missing a pair in the closing seconds of overtime that would've given the Cavaliers the lead.
Instead, Cleveland dropped a 105-103 decision to take on its first losing streak since a six-game slide in January. The Celtics are also looking to recover from a tough loss after they blew a 26-point lead at home before falling to Golden State by a 106-101 margin Sunday. Isaiah Thomas continued to make an impact since his arrival in Boston at the trade deadline, producing 20 points in 29 minutes off the bench.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, CSN New England (Boston), FSN Ohio (Cleveland)
ABOUT THE CELTICS (23-34): Thomas has reached the 20-point mark in four of five games with Boston while playing as many as 30 minutes just once, immediately becoming an aggressive leader on the offensive end. However, he is shooting just 37.7 percent over his last four games and, after getting to the line often early on with the Celtics, he attempted one free throw Sunday, compared with 21 field-goal tries (11 from beyond the arc). The trigger-happy style, which included 23 missed 3-pointers, led to Boston taking 109 shots against Golden State, the franchise's highest total in a non-overtime game since 1982.
ABOUT THE CAVALIERS (37-24): On a star-studded unit the work of a bench contributor like Tristan Thompson can go unnoticed, but he remains one of the most reliable performers for a Cleveland unit that has seen its top players deal with injuries and inconsistencies. The fourth-year pro, who first had to adjust to a bench role after Kevin Love came over in a trade last summer, is shooting a career-high 53.9 percent and remains the top rebounder among NBA reserves after a season-high 19 at Houston. Thompson's streak of 267 consecutive games is the second-longest active run in the NBA.
1. James, who scored 41 points to lead Cleveland to a win at Boston earlier this season, needs 25 points to surpass former Miami Heat teammate Ray Allen (24,505) for 21st on the NBA's all-time list.
2. Celtics C Kelly Olynyk is getting close to a return from an ankle injury that has kept him out of 17 games.
3. The teams play twice in a span of three days in April to conclude the four-game season series.
PREDICTION: Cavaliers 108, Celtics 99
Stats and Records
Cleveland Off vs
102.4 Points For
102.7 Points Against