Lance Stephenson trolls LeBron James as the Pacers take down Cavaliers
Jan 14 2018 by Marjorie Miles
Leading by 14 to start the second half, the Cavaliers watched the Pacersscore the first 11 points of the third quarter to make it a 58-55 game. Seeing the way the Pacers rally from nearly every hole they dig for themselves this season gives the fans hope.
Pacers: Begin a five-game road trip at Phoenix on Sunday.
It was an unexpected blowout considering the Raptors were missing an injured Kyle Lowry and a suspended Serge Ibaka.
IN outscored Cleveland 32-16 in the third quarter to erase a 14-point halftime deficit and take a 76-74 lead after three quarters.
Then, after Darren Collison made a free throw to give the Pacers a 97-95 lead, James' desperation shot at a three-pointer bounced high off the rim as the buzzer sounded. IN has won three of its last four and has beaten Cleveland three times in one season for the first time since 2013-14.
But they have lost seven of their previous 10.
But if someone only watched the way the Cavs played Thursday, he or she would question how in the world anyone thinks they can get back to the National Basketball Association finals.
It marked the first time in James' career that his team had trailed by 20 or more points at the half in consecutive games, according to ESPN Stats and Information.
The team's new-found reliance on the three-point shot along with a deep bench anchored by the likes of VanVleet, Jakob Poeltl, Norman Powell and Pascal Siakam can be credited with Toronto's strong showing so far. Starting center Jonas Valanciunas had six offensive rebounds.
Too bad he went 8 of 21 (38.1%) from the field and 2 of 6 from deep.
Kevin Durant scored 26 points and the Warriors used a 13-4 run in the fourth quarter to down the Bucks 108-94. He finished with four points and registered a minus-20.
Led by DeMar DeRozan, Toronto sits at second in the Eastern Conference with a 29-11 record, with a 15-2 record at home. That's usually a combination that equates to postseason success.In terms of point differential, the Cavs are 11th while Toronto ranks second, trailing the Golden State Warriors.Despite the Cavs' awful stretch, ranking as the league's worst defense in the three games since Isaiah Thomas - who was supposed to lift the team to new heights - in the starting lineup, the Cavs don't seem too concerned.
Anthony Davis scored 36 points and added nine rebounds in the Pelicans' 119-113 win over the Trail Blazers, but his team-mate DeMarcus Cousins was as good or better with 24 points, 19 boards and eight assists.
Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue suggested that there were "agendas" within the team but did not clarify what he meant.
"They're still a good team, they still play hard, the young guys play hard", Lue said in pregame. "You've got to get on him and try to get into him".