After having his aggressiveness questioned following Sunday's Game 1 loss to the Indiana Pacers at Quicken Loans Arena, James came out with a point to prove in Game 2, and prove it he did with a game-high 46 points in a 100-97 victory in Cleveland Wednesday night.
"It's fine, yes", Love said while speaking to reporters after the game. The game marked the 1,362 one of James' career (combining both regular season and playoffs) along with the most points he has ever scored in the first five minutes. Somehow, someway, All-Star guard Victor Oladipo had an open look from beyond the 3-point arc to tie the game in the final minute, but couldn't convert.
"I got a clean look, I shot and I just missed", Oladipo said.
Add to those facts there is the matter of no team in the Eastern Conference with a sizable advantage over the Cavs in this time span, nor have they been seriously threatened to be overtaken as conference champions.
The series shifts to IN for Game 3 on Friday.
Lue also revealed that he decided not to bring Love back in the game is because the Cavs "had a good flow going".More news: Moto E5, Moto E5 Plus, Moto E5 Play with Android Oreo announced
If the first two games in the best-of-seven series are an indication of what to expect in Game 3, the team that jumps out quickly will prevail.
And a tone needed setting, because in Game 1 of the series the Cavs were tone deaf. "It allowed [Green] and Rodney to kind of get in and get settled into the game before their number was called, so I think it worked well for us tonight".
James' 46 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists led the way for the Cavs.
"We got lucky", four-times NBA Most Valuable Player James said in a courtside interview. I don't come into games saying 'I'm going to do this.
"We know what coach Pop has meant to us, and we just want to offer our condolences for his loss", Snyder said.
With the series now tied at one game a piece, the Cavs will travel to IN to play two on the road before coming back home for a now guaranteed game 5. James had 20 in the quarter and outscored the Pacers 20-18.
James made 17-of-24 shots from the field, including 2-of-5 3-pointers, and 10-of-13 free throw. He scored another 26 points in the game, but in outscored Cleveland 79-67 in the game's final three frames.