Cavs hold on for 1-point Game 1 win

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - SPORTS -

LeBron James scored 32 points and the defending cham­pion Cava­liers, look­ing to flip the switch af­ter a shaky reg­u­lar sea­son, be­gan the NBA play­offs by es­cap­ing with a 109-108 vic­tory over the Pac­ers on Saturday in Cleve­land.

Play­ing in his 200th play­off game, James added 13 as­sists and six re­bounds while win­ning his 18th con­sec­u­tive first-round game. The Cava­liers have now won 12 straight play­off games at home.

How­ever, it was any­thing but easy as they had to with­stand a strong come­back by the Pac­ers, who could have stolen Game 1. C.J. Miles missed a 14-foot jumper in the fi­nal sec­ond.

Paul Ge­orge had the ball in his hands on the fi­nal pos­ses­sion, but the Cava­liers dou­ble-teamed him, forc­ing him to pass to Miles, who has al­ways shot well against his for­mer team. Miles’ shot was on line but short.

Kyrie Irv­ing scored 23 points and Kevin Love added 17 for the Cava­liers, who had gone 10-14 since March 1 and lost their last four reg­u­lar-sea­son games.

Ge­orge scored 29 points and Lance Stephen­son had 16 for the sev­enth-seeded Pac­ers.

Gian­nis An­te­tok­oun­mpo scored 28 points, rookie Malcolm Brog­don had 16 and the Bucks won in Toronto in Game 1 of a first-round East­ern Con­fer­ence play­off se­ries.

Play­ing in his sec­ond ca­reer play­off se­ries, An­te­tok­oun­mpo made 13 of 18 shots and added eight re­bounds and three as­sists. Greg Mon­roe had 14 points, Tony Snell 11 and Khris Mid­dle­ton fin­ished with 10 and nine as­sists.

DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points and Serge Ibaka had 19 points and 14 re­bounds for the Rap­tors, who have lost the open­ing game in eight con­sec­u­tive play­off se­ries.

The sis­ter of Celtics guard Isa­iah Thomas died Saturday morn­ing in a one-car ac­ci­dent in Fed­eral Way, Wash.

The Washington State Pa­trol said 22-year-old Chyna J. Thomas died at the scene on In­ter­state 5 af­ter the ac­ci­dent about 5 a.m. The po­lice re­port said she wasn’t wear­ing a seat belt.

The Bos­ton Globe re­ported that Isa­iah Thomas was plan­ning to stay in Bos­ton to play in Sunday’s first-round play­off opener against the Bulls.

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