Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Sports | By Brooke Harris

Pacers Claim Game 1 In Commanding Playoff Start

Pacers Claim Game 1 In Commanding Playoff Start

For much of the game, James would drive into the lane, draw a crowd of Pacers defenders, then quickly kick the ball back out to an open man.

LeBron James led the Cavs with 24 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds but Cleveland struggled mightily to find any consistency.

"I think we came out there, we punched them in the mouth that first game", Turner said. I was down 3-1 in the Finals. "So I'm the last guy to ask about what I'm gonna be like the next couple days".

LeBron and company were down 3-1 in the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors in 2016, before they mounted a furious comeback and made history against a team that won 73 games in the regular season.

We all remember Lance Stephenson's magic moment against LeBron, probably because they keep facing off in the playoffs. They know that a series isn't won or lost in a single game. So it's definitely a feel-out game. We're fully aware of his team, and we realize it's not going to be easy, but that doesn't mean we're just going to come in here and just fold.

Jordan Clarkson, making his playoff debut, was 2-for-6 from the field.

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It also was the first playoff-opening loss for James, who came in 12-0 and didn't realise he had been ideal starting the post-season.

Terry Rozier added 23 points, four rebounds and three assists for Boston in his first career playoff start. This game was a flawless encapsulation of what he's been this season - dropping 10 points in the fourth quarter, including two huge 3-pointers.

But it was thought once the calendar flipped from the regular season to postseason, Cleveland would show their true colors. "It happens that fast", he explained. "Eh, you can't simulate that".

"You can't simulate that, can't simulate that speed, can't simulate what's going on out there". It goes without saying, you can only win by outscoring your opponent. We've got to take that, but at the same time, they can't come down and just score so easy ether. "Even the older guys as well. All I'm focused on is myself and becoming the best Victor Oladipo possible".

JR Smith (15 points) and Larry Nance (10 points and five rebounds) provided their best arguments for replacing Rodney Hood (nine points) and Jeff Green (zero points) in the starting lineup. However, coach Nate McMillan said the guard wanted to prove himself and did with hard work.

"He did some good things", McMillan said.

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"We're fully aware of LeBron".

If you've ever paid attention to Bill Simmons various gambling do's and don't's, you know that rule No. 1 is to always be tired of the "Nobody believes in us" team.

Neither review resulted in a flagrant foul, though Stephenson was assessed a technical after the second.

After the Pacers' 98-80 victory - fueled by mediocre offensive performances by all the starters other than James - the questions have multiplied. "It's the playoffs. You expect to be pushed".

Game 2 takes place Wednesday night at Quicken Loans Arena.

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