Cleveland equalizes Eastern semifinals series with Boston

Donovan Mitchell lifted the Cavaliers to a Game 2 win over Boston. (AP photo)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

The Cleveland Cavaliers head back to their home court with boosted morale after snatching Game 2 from the Boston Celtics, 118-94, in their Eastern Conference semifinals clash during the ongoing NBA Playoffs on May 10, 2024.

Cleveland bounced back from a horrendous Game 1 loss and used an efficient second-half performance to demolish the Celtics on the road.

Game 2 started with Boston in the driver’s seat as their high-octane offense once again made the difference in the first seven minutes of the game.

After a Derrick White three-pointer, Boston extended its lead to nine points, 14-5. However, the Cavaliers responded with a sense of urgency and pummeled the Celtics’ paint to retake the advantage heading into the second half.

Despite the poor shooting of Donovan Mitchell in the first quarter, Caris LeVert stepped up to the challenge and propelled Cleveland to a momentum-changing swing in the final two minutes of the opening frame.

Boston recovered, thanks to several baskets from Jayson Tatum and Payton Pritchard that forced a deadlock at 54-all after the first 24 minutes of action.

Just when the Celtics thought they could replicate their majestic second-half performance from Game 1, the Cavaliers showed a different dimension to their game after moving the ball well, setting the tone for their offense in the third quarter.

When Cleveland needed someone to bolster their scoring consistently, it was Mitchell who spearheaded a massive attack that put the Cavaliers up by double digits.

After the Mitchell scoring spree, everyone at the Boston TD Garden was stunned and could only watch as the athletic shooting guard embarrassed every defender thrown at him.

It was then all Cleveland in the final quarter as they ballooned their largest lead to as much as 29 points. Boston’s head coach Joe Mazzulla then had seen enough and waved the white flag with still four minutes remaining in the game.

For the second straight game, Mitchell became Cleveland’s top-scorer with 29 big points, shooting an efficient 10/19 from the field.

LeVert, who only added four points in Game 1, bounced back with a vengeance and wrapped up the Game 2 win with 21 markers, six rebounds, and three assists.


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