The Eastern Conference Finals remains in Boston Friday night for Game 2 as the Celtics look to tie the series up before heading to Cleveland for the next couple games.
In Game 1, it was evident the Cavs’ rest was an advantage compared to the Celtics quick turnaround into a new series after a game 7 versus a physical Wizards team. The Celtics had good looks on shots they usually make but their energy level was low. For a team that averaged a 40 percent shooting percentage versus the Wizards and come into Game 1 shooting 31.6 percent, it was evident they were gassed. They didn’t get to the free throw line much only shooting 18 free throws to the Cavs 35 attempts. After the game, Isaiah Thomas said, “We got the shots we wanted, we just couldn’t capitalize on it. I think that was a big reason why our defense was let down as well,” knowing their stamina was not where it needed to be to compete with a fresh Lebron and Cavs team.
“It’s tough to continue to keep playing hard even though we need to when you don’t see shots fall.”
The Celts did show a spurt of energy though, when they went on a 15-4 run to end the 3rd quarter but other than that, it was a game in which more rest conquered over less rust.
For Game 2, the Celtics will surely make adjustments in better efforts to protect the ball on the offensive end and to protect the paint on the defensive end. The Celtics gave up 9 steals and a total of 14 turnovers in Game 1. They allowed Tristan Thompson to gain a career-high in points and Lebron a career-high in points in the paint. They cannot allow that to happen Friday night otherwise they’ll be a game closer to being swept out of the playoffs. The Celtics are aware of what Game 2 means knowing they will be on the road after tonight.
“I’m very confident. I believe in these guys,” Isaiah Thomas said. “We just gotta protect our home court in Game 2 and get the win.”
Meanwhile the Cavs will continue to strive for that great level of play Lebron knows his team is capable of.
“I don’t even think we played that great tonight,” Lebron said after their Game 1 victory. Which in retrospect, is quite intimidating for all of those who watched the way the Cavs dominated the Celtics all game long.
The Celtics will use their everlasting confidence to find their shot in Game 2 and will sneak past the Cavs en route to a close victory that ties the series up before heading to Cleveland for Games 3 and 4.