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Cavs sweep Raptors with 109-102 victory in Game 4

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Tonight’s Game 4 matchup of the Eastern Conference Semifinals between the defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors went scoreless through the first two and a half minutes.

Finally, LeBron James opened the scoring with a two-handed jam. The battle ensued from there…

Jonas Valanciunas pushed Toronto’s lead to three (9-6) near the seven minute mark of the quarter with an easy dunk. DeMar DeRozan quickly followed with his first two points of the game, pushing the Raptors’ lead to five. Subsequently, Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue called a timeout to rally his troops.

Coming out of the timeout, Channing Frye, who had just entered the game, knocked down a three, but the momentum was short-lived. The Raptors, who were shooting the ball well in the first quarter, managed to extend their lead to 11 by way of a three-pointer from Serge Ibaka.

Kyrie Irving brought the Cavs’ deficit down to eight at the three minute mark with an acrobatic layup. It looked like the Cavs were ready to mount a comeback.

James found J.R. Smith for an open three with the quarter coming to a close, bringing the Cavs within four. Shortly after that, James made a charging drive to the basket, converted the shot, and got fouled. The King stepped up to the line and buried his free-throw to tie the game at 28.

In just under three minutes of playing time, The Cavs reduced an 11-point Raptors advantage. Heading into the second, the game was locked at 28 points apiece.

Deron Williams opened Cleveland’s scoring in the second frame with a spot-up three, giving the Cavs a 31-30 lead. Kyle Korver, who had just come off the bench, then knocked down a catch-and-shoot three with just under nine minutes showing on the second quarter game clock.

DeRozan caught an inadvertent knee to the groin from Iman Shumpert near the midway point of the second. After an official review of the play, Shumpert was given a technical foul.

Back and forth the score went, with neither side gaining much of an advantage.

Off a busted Raptors possession, the Cavs finally gained a bit of momentum with a three from Irving, pushing Cleveland’s lead to five.

A crowd-silencing three from Korver pushed the Cavs’ lead to 10. All of a sudden, the champs were on a 7-0 run. Raptors head coach Dwane Casey was forced to call a frustrated timeout.

Another three from Korver in the closing minute of the half had the Cavs leading by nine. Shortly after that, Korver knocked down yet another three to push the Cavs’ lead to 14.

At the break, seven different Cavaliers had made a three, Korver was on fire, and the champs were holding a twelve point advantage, 61-49.

Coming out of the locker room, James pushed the Cavs’ lead to 16 with an open three.

For a while, it looked like the game was getting away from the Raptors. However, a few sloppy Cleveland possessions and a three from Ibaka brought the Cavs’ advantage down to 11.

A driving layup from Cory Joseph had the crowd inside The Air Canada Centre on their feet. On Toronto’s next possession, Ibaka drained another three to reduce their gap to seven. Coach Lue then called a timeout to once again rally his men.

DeRozan brought Toronto within four, but Tristan Thompson silenced the crowd on the next play with an alley-oop.

Channing Frye knocked down a big three to push Cleveland’s lead back to 10 in the closing minute of the third quarter. It seemed like the Cavs were ready to pull away, but two turnovers and a three from Raptors guard P.J. Tucker had Toronto trailing by just five at the end of the third, 85-80.

The fourth quarter began with another three from Tucker. The crowd was into it and the Raptors were within two.

With just under ten minutes remaining in the game, Freddy Van Vleet brought Toronto within one by way of an open three. The Cavs then battled back, pushing their lead to four with another Thompson alley-oop.

This time, it was coach Casey calling a timeout to make a few adjustments.

For whatever reason, the Cavs had a series of poor decisions. With 6:38 remaining on the clock, Ibaka gave the Raptors their first lead of the second half by way of an open jumpshot (and one).

With time ticking away, Irving drilled a three to push the Cavs in front once more. He wasn’t finished there, though. Uncle Drew went on to score 11 straight points for the champs, pushing their lead to eight.

A cold-blooded triple from James put the Cavs up 11 with just under three minutes to play.

In the end, the Raptors weren’t able to overcome Cleveland’s late surge. When the final horn blew, the Cavs had swept the Raptors by way of a 109-102 victory.

Despite his six turnovers, tonight’s game ball goes to LeBron James. The King racked up 35 points (11-22 from the field, 5-12 from downtown), nine rebounds, six assists, and one block in his 46 minutes of playing time.


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