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Cleveland Cavaliers-Toronto Raptors Game 2 Preview; Raptors Look to Even Series

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Similar to the first round of the playoffs, the Toronto Raptors find themselves in an early hole after dropping game one of the series 105-116 back on Monday night.

The fully rested Cavaliers put together a solid performance that had them up by as much as 25 at one point. LeBron James torched the Raptors with 35 points (13/23 FG, 2/5 3Pt, 7/8 FT), 10 rebounds, and four assists across a team-high 41 minutes. Containing the king will be the most difficult thing the Raptors have had to do all season. Toronto will need their defensive-minded players in Serge Ibaka and PJ Tucker to stop LeBron the same way they were able to stop the Greek Freak in their first round series with Milwaukee.

Kyrie Irving produced 24 points (7/16 FG, 3/8 3Pt, 7/9 FT), 10 assists, and added a pair of steals in 34 minutes of floor time. Kevin Love added 18 points (5/13 FG, 3/6 3Pt, 5/6 FT) and nine rebounds in 32 minutes. Should the Raptors contain LeBron, Irving and Love will have to elevate their respective games.

We are still in search for something from DeMarre Carroll, who has provided very little for the Raptors thus far in the postseason. Carroll made the only shot he took in 15 minutes of action in the starting lineup. Jonas Valanciunas has also been very quiet, adding just six points and six rebounds over 20 minutes. Toronto will need more production from their role players to take some of the weight off Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan.

Raptors head coach Dwane Casey may have to resort to a smaller starting lineup with Ibaka manning the five. After falling behind 2-1 to Milwaukee, this move which inserted Norman Powell into the starting lineup turned the series around completely for Toronto. Powell could very well be the X factor once again this series, who added 12 points in 20 minutes of action off the bench in game one.

Series Schedule and Results: Cavaliers lead 1-0

Game 1 (5/1): Cavaliers 116, Raptors 105

Game 2 (5/3): Raptors @ Cavaliers, 7 PM ET, TNT

Game 3 (5/5): Cavaliers @ Raptors, 7 PM ET, ESPN

Game 4 (5/7): Cavaliers @ Raptors, 3:30 PM ET, ABC

Game 5 (5/9, if nec.): Raptors @ Cavaliers, TBA, TNT

Game 6 (5/11, if nec.): Cavaliers @ Raptors, TBA, ESPN

Game 7 (5/14, if nec.): Raptors @ Cavaliers, TBA, TNT

 

 

 

 

 

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About Eric Peterson

Content/Social Media Manager at The Lead and Bucks Lead division. Currently studying Sport Management at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Twitter: @eric_peterson20

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