Kevin Love Hilariously Interrupts LeBron James During Postgame Press Conference

"I'd much rather have an 18-point lead than not have a lead at all", James said.

Coming off a pair of wins, Cleveland Cavaliers locks horn with Indiana Pacers in the NBA Playoffs First Round, Game 3 tonight.

The third quarter was particularly fruitful for the Cavaliers as they took advantage of a mismatch down low feeding Love in the post - who netted 10 straight points and drew a charge in a run of just two minutes.

"We have a chance to do something we all have been wanting to do all season, and that's to put together a four-quarter game", he said. "I think we just have to do it ourselves".

It would seem like there's a big difference between being able to take out the Warriors or Spurs in the Finals, and merely avoiding tripping over one's own feet in four consecutive quarters.

A three-pointer on the buzzer from Kyrie Irving handed Cleveland a 96-78 lead heading into the fourth quarter, an 18-point cushion.

Maybe that spark will ignite a larger fire in the defending champions, who allowed a big lead in the fourth quarter to almost disappear again before finishing off the Pacers.

Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said the problem isn't the defense, but the offense.

"He's been great on the bench, cheering guys on, keeping guys motivated and when it was his turn to play, he stepped up and played well", Lue said. Kyrie Irving is playing 36.5 minutes so far and Kevin Love 35.

Iman Shumpert went from odd-man out to go-to guy in just two games.

The Cavs do, the Pacers don't, and that's that. IN shot 51.2 percent on Monday. "It was a very poorly officiated basketball game".

San Antonio had a better start than in Game 1.

That's not what George did on Monday night. Overall we shot ball in the paint 35 times and we had 15 free throws - for the game. He did have eight of Cleveland's 19 turnovers, miscues that allowed the Pacers to hang around.

Through two games of the best-of-seven first-round playoff series, both Cavs' victories at Quicken Loans Arena, the team's "Big Three" have accounted for 161 of the Cavs' 226 points.

But as they seemingly took their foot off the gas they allowed IN, who saw point guard Jeff Teague injure his wrist IN the second half, to creep back into it. That boosted those twenty-three points to thirty-seven points and the Cavs won by six. The Cavs will need to lean on their Big 3 yet again to come away victorious.

Perhaps making it more painful for George is the Pacers' history of being eliminated by LeBron-led teams dating back to his Miami Heat days. It's only one game, but the Raptors haven't looked particularly scary in any of the three games this series.

  • Julie Sanders