Cavs slaughter Raptors in Game 5, one away from consecutive NBA Finals
If you told me that a group of crooks kidnapped the Toronto Raptors we saw in games 3 and 4, held them hostage, and suited up as them in Game 5 as a disguise, before they hold them for ransom, I’d probably believe you. Either that, or the Cleveland Cavaliers should be in jail for the beating they handed the Raptors. If you would have told me…ehh, ok, I’ll stop, but you get the point. Last night’s performance by the Raptors was not only HORRIFIC, but also short of what anybody expected.
As soon as the opening tip-off Cleveland got off to a hot start. The Cavaliers were out for revenge after they suffered back-to-back losses in Toronto and from being dominated by Bismack Biyombo ( 7 points 2-3 FG) and the rest of the Raptors defense, to not having an answer for Demar Derozan (14 points, 2-8 FG) and Kyle Lowry (13 points 5-12 FG). Cleveland was able to bounce back and retake the lead in the Eastern Conference Finals 3-2. Toronto never had a chance to make it a close game, as by the end of the first quarter of play, Cleveland was up by 18. After landing two huge haymakers at home, to tie the series, Toronto went back to the struggles that got them in the 0-2 hole to begin with.
The Cavaliers big 3 on the other hand finally were on the same page in Game 5 to more than likely punch their ticket to consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals. Lebron James was phenomenal (23 points, 10-17 FG, 8 assists, and 6 rebounds), Kyrie Irving got his and played lights out (23 points, 9-17 FG), and Kevin Love (25 points, 8-10 FG, 3-4 3-point FG) was able to shake out the funk that he was in on the road and bounced back to his old self. There were numerous times in the previous two games where Love would go missing. This is what they’re going to keep needing going forward if they want to capture their first NBA championship.
There’s not much to dissect here. It was a one sided game from the start, and the closest Toronto was able to keep the score is when it was 0-0. If I learned anything from the Raptors, its that they’re a product of home court. But, even at that, I don’t see how they bounce back in Game 6, and possibly force a Game 7 back to Cleveland after getting blown out by the Cavs 116-78. Cleveland on the other hand will come out with a different mindset compared to games 3 and 4, and ready to punch their ticket to the finals. Not to mention in what would be Lebron James sixth straight finals appearance.
Game 6 tips-off Friday 8:30 PM ET.
Orlando Torres covers the NBA for MyFantasySportsTalk.com | Follow him on Twitter @itslandoyo