Anything Cavs Can Do, C's Can Do Better: Boston 120, Cleveland 88.
The Lebron vs Rondo matchup was supposed to be the big story, however, Cleveland's meltdown stole the show. After the Cavs handed Boston it's worst home loss in playoff history in Game 3 by a margin of 29, the Celtics took it right back to them in Cleveland - giving the Cavs' their worst home playoff loss in team history by a margin of 32.
Ray Allen scored 25 points on 8/13 shooting, including 6/9 from behind the 3-point line as the Celtics took Game 5 from Cleveland, 120-88. The Celtics now head home with a 3-2 lead in the series.
Shaq led the Cavaliers with 21 points while this year's MVP, Lebron James, was a surprising non-factor. James went the entire first half without a field goal and finished the game totaling 15 points on a mere 3/14 shooting - his fourth worst career playoff performance.
While the Cavaliers were struggling, the Celtics were demolishing in every aspect of the game. In addition to Ray Allen's team leading performance, Paul Pierce stepped up big - registering a double double with 21 points and 11 rebounds. KG added 18 points on 8/14 shooting. The trifecta was in full effect. Like Lebron, Rondo had a quiet first half - registering 0 points and assists. However, he made up for lost time, scoring 16 in the second half and handing out 7 assists. Big Baby also came up big off of the bench scoring 15 points for the game and at one point registered as many points (12) in the fourth quarter as the entire Cavaliers team.
Boston started the third quarter hot and brought their 6 point half-time lead up to as much as 21 and outscored Cleveland, 30-19. Rondo scored his first field goal of the game with 9:47 left in the third and totaled 12 points in the quarter. After missing seven shots, Lebron also got his first field goal of the night nearly 8 minutes into the third. In the final quarter, Boston refused to let up and held control for the rest of the game, closing things out 120-88.
The first half started a bit weird: Lebron James led his team with 8 points depsite being 0/4 from the field, Rajon Rondo had no points or assists, the struggling Paul Pierce led Boston with 14 points, the Celtics had a lot of calls going their way, and Zydrunas Ilgauskas was on the court for only the second time this post-season.
The Cavaliers built a lead in the first quarter and extended it by as much as 8. However, the Celtics withstood the Cleveland run and went on one of their own, which stood at 21-7 with 2:30 left in the half, and led by as much as 9. However, the Cavs threw everything they had at Boston, coming within two on a Mo Williams 3-pointer and an Anderson Varejao free throw. Unphased again; the Celtics, led by Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, went up by 6 to close the half, 50-44.
The Celtics now hold a decisive 3-2 advantage and look to close out the series at the TD Garden on Thursday night. The winner of this series moves on to face the Orlando Magic in the Conference Finals.