Toronto Raptors: 6 Revelations from Game 3 loss to Cavaliers

Cleveland Cavaliers’ Le Bron James hits the game-winning shot as Toronto Raptors’ OG Anunoby and CJ Miles watch. AP

Cleveland Cavaliers’ Le Bron James hits the game-winning shot as Toronto Raptors’ OG Anunoby and CJ Miles watch. AP

Pictured, James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers celebrates after hitting the game winning shot to beat the Toronto Raptors 105-103 in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2018 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio, on May 5, 2018.

LeBron James gives Cleveland a 3-0 series lead against Toronto with an outrageous floating shot as the clock expires. So the level of difficulty of that shot, it is very hard. "Like the LeBron shot, I'm nearly at a loss for words". It wound up with Brad Stevens drawing up a phenomenal play to get Al Horford open under the basket. "I was able to hit a floater off the glass". In order for Toronto to be successful in Game 3 they must take better care of the ball. The series is now 2-1 in favour of Golden State, but the Pelicans have another home game and anything can happen in New Orleans where they are undefeated (3-0) in the postseason. When Love wasn't doing that, he was contesting shots at the rim.

Game 4 is Monday night, and the odds are stacked against the rattled Raptors.

Kevin Love recorded 21 points and 16 rebounds as fourth-seeded Cleveland defeated Toronto for the ninth straight time during the postseason.

Serge Ibaka is due for a big game and there might not be a better time than Game 3.

Over the last 15 games of the regular season, the Raptors were 13th in defensive rating, a period over which they went just 9-6. Cleveland was a game-high +20 in Love's 38 minutes of action. I think Kyle Korver, as well. The 20-year-old is averaging 24.3 points per game this series and 18.1 points in the playoffs. Kyle Lowry scored 27 for the Raptors, who tied with 8 seconds left before James' heroics.

He struggled hugely on the offensive end as he scored just eight points on 3-of-12 shooting.

Turning Point - In a game that had exactly one tie and zero lead-changes, it's hard to pick a clear turning point aside from LeBron's buzzer-beating histrionics.

For a brief moment Saturday night, thanks to a late three-pointer by rookie OG Anunoby, the Raptors got one hand out of the playoff hole they had dug themselves. But a string of errors and a poor start by DeRozan - who missed eight of nine shots with three turnovers in the first half - made the comeback heavy lifting.

The Raptors would get within five, 57-52, in the third.

By the Numbers - 792, 123 ... "We've got to give credit to (the Cavaliers)". He's also aware of the narrative that his team has been mentally defeated by James.

"I ran out of words a while ago".

"I practice every shot I take in game, no matter [when I take it] I feel pretty comfortable with it". It's always like, 'When would he shoot a shot like that? If the series extends beyond that, it's back to Toronto for Game 5, set for Wednesday night (5/9) at Air Canada Centre. With their backs against the wall will the Toronto Raptors be able to do what seems like the impossible?

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