Jaylen Brown had 23 points and eight rebounds, Marcus Morris added 21 points and 10 boards, and the Boston Celtics opened a 21-point, first-quarter lead and scorched the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-83 in game one of the NBA Eastern Conference finals.
LeBron quickly recalled everything with explicit detail as he retold what happened on each sequence, who the plays were drawn up for, who made or missed a shot and did it all without having to think about it.
James finished with 15 points on 5-of-16 shooting with seven rebounds and nine assists. He also had seven turnovers in the game. Boston is seeking its first Finals berth since 2010, when it lost in seven games to the Los Angeles Lakers.
LeBron James has led his Cleveland Cavaliers to wins in the playoffs this postseason.
By that time, Boston led, 61-35, - the biggest halftime playoff deficit in James' career.More news: Pakistan, Ireland historic test begins in Dublin today
This matched up with what Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens said, where he said that LeBron James will make his shots.
Boston shot 51.2 percent (43 of 84) from the field and 36.7 percent (11 of 30) from 3-point range while outrebounding the visitors 48-40. "We have a great opportunity in front of us and we're enjoying it game by game".
Talented 20-something players Tatum, Rozier and Brown have filled the void left by injured stars Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward, combining with Horford - who has been eliminated by James four times in the playoffs - to become a formidable force that out-hustled the more experienced Cavaliers and dominated defensively. They attacked us early on.
The series opener at TD Garden in Boston represents a crucial opportunity for the Celtics to avoid the same fate as the Raptors, who were swept by the Cavaliers in the previous round.
The Celtics took the floor to a hype video that began with the broadcast of Hayward's injury in the first quarter of the first game, at Cleveland.More news: Khloe Kardashian Shares First Video of Baby True Thompson's Face
As more players went down to injury, the prophesies grew even gloomier.
It was more than they needed. Boston started Morris in place of Aron Baynes to match up against James.
The Cavs made a push in the third quarter to cut the lead to 14 points and maybe give themselves a chance, but that didn't last long. Tristan Thompson had a game-high 11 rebounds off the Cavs' bench.
Celtics The Celtics improved to 8-0 at home this postseason. However, getting past LeBron, who has reached the NBA Finals seven straight seasons, will be his team's biggest challenge yet.
Boston's 36-18 lead at the end of the first quarter was the second-largest in a playoff game in franchise history.More news: Guardiola Reacts To City's 100-Pts EPL Landmark