The Cleveland Cavaliers claimed a first-round playoff sweep of the Boston Celtics with an edgy 101-93 win at the TD Garden on Sunday.
LeBron James led his team with 27 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists as the Cavs took care of business at the first time of asking against a spirited Celtics team.
Boston were led by Jared Sullinger who had 21 points and 11 rebounds and Isaiah Thomas with 21 points and nine assists, but it wasn’t enough to avoid a sweep as Brad Stevens’ team will no doubt have benefited from the playoff experience as they look to come back stronger next season.
While the Cavs will now await the winner of the Chicago Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks series which is currently 3-1 in the Bulls’ favour with Game 5 coming on Monday, they may have to do so without two of their star players.
Kevin Love departed the game with a shoulder injury after clashing with Kelly Olynyk, and it hasn’t been confirmed how serious the injury is yet as he immediately left the court and went back to the locker room and did not return.
Meanwhile, Kendrick Perkins was fortunate to get away with not being ejected for his illegal screen and clash with Jae Crowder, while the Celtics star later got hit in the face by JR Smith as they contested in the paint. Smith was ejected from the game and will likely be suspended by the league for the hit.
Nevertheless, it was a winning start to the post-season for this Cavs team who are still considered the favourites to go on and win a championship, and with James and Kyrie Irving leading the charge, they will be confident of advancing even further.