James scores 35, Cavs take 3-0 lead with 115-94 victory

Toronto Raptors guard De Mar DeRozan drives to the basket against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first half of Game 3 of an NBA basketball second-round playoff series in Toronto on Friday
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15 May, 2017

LeBron James poured in 35 points and shot 15-of-16 from the free throw line. Lowry sat on the bench for the whole game.

Aldridge had managed just 19 points combined in the first two games, but he stepped up in the wake of Parker's season-ending leg injury, scoring nine points in the fourth quarter to help the Spurs pull away.

The Cavaliers established a 2-0 lead in the series thanks to a 125-103 victory on Wednesday in Game 2. However, after getting completely shut down in Game 2, his backcourt partner DeMar DeRozan re-emerged by scoring 21 points during the first two quarters and finishing with 37 points.

Toronto Raptors All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry missed the team's morning shootaround due to his ankle injury and is a game-time decision for Friday night's Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series.

"I think three quarters last night we just played extremely aggressive and tried to take away everything we could take away", DeRozan said. The selflessness just starts to go throughout the team, and we all start to feel really good.

"We would love to have him", said coach Dwane Casey.

Trailing the series 3-0, the Raptors will attempt to stave off elimination Sunday when Game 4 tips off at 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC.

"It's still pretty sore", Lowry said. The last time he didn't appear in a Spurs playoff game was 2001 against the Lakers, when David Robinson was still starting (and a game where Warriors coach Steve Kerr and Cavs coach Tyronn Lue were both on the floor as backups when time expired). Cory Joseph made his first playoff start in Lowry's place, but finished with just four points.

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With 36 through three quarters DeRozan sat down to begin the fourth and normally doesn't get the call back in until at least the half way mark of the final quarter. In leading the Cavaliers to six straight wins, he's averaging 34.2 points, 9.2 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 2.7 steals and 1.8 blocks.

Jonas Valanciunas scored 19 points and eight rebounds, with Norman Powell chipping in with 13 points and Serge Ibaka adding 12 for Toronto. "We knew they were going to give us their best shot". The Cavs were 41-of-75 from the field and 18-of-33 from 3-point land in the win.

Two nights earlier, James shot a three-pointer over Toronto shot-blocker Ibaka, but not before pausing to spin the ball twice in his hands, as if he was lining up to shoot a free throw.

Of bigger concern might be the status of guard Kyle Lowry, who sprained his left ankle in the third quarter.

"He was limping badly", Casey said. That's the point disparity from 3-point range between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors in this series. And it showed. He moved up and down the court well, he was able to push off on the block, he felt good shooting the ball.

The Cleveland Cavaliers took care of business north of the border with a 115-94 win over the Toronto Raptors in Game 3. If you're going to knock out the champ, you've got to knock him out.

The Raptors actually missed the first 12 three-pointers they attempted not seeing one go down until Norm Powell took the lid off the basket with a make on attempt No. 13 by the team.

After going down 2-0 in last season's ECF, the Raptors brought in Bismack Biyombo (who hadn't played much throughout the entire season) as a last-ditch effort to try and make that series competitive, and it worked out better than they ever could have hoped.


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