The Cleveland Cavaliers are moving to the second round. The price the win came at, however, may impact the Cavs beyond this series. In the Cavs' 97-84 win, the Cavaliers lost Kevin Love to a injured left shoulder in the first quarter and then J.R. Smith was ejected in the third quarter when he was called for a Flagrant 2 foul for striking Jae Crowder in the face. With the Cavs missing two starters and fouls accumulating, both Kyrie Irving and LeBron James played over 40 minutes, with LeBron playing almost the entire game.
The game did get tight near the end. The Cavs, who led by as many as 21, saw the lead whittled down to six with a little more than 30 seconds to play. After Luigi Datome missed an open 3-pointer and Irving pulled down a rebound, Irving was fouled and hit two free throws on the other end to seal it.
Today's game was largely physical after Love's injury. It featured several hard fouls and the Cavs were called for two flagrant fouls during the game. Aside from Smith's Flagrant 2, Kendrick Perkins was called for a technical and a Flagrant 1 foul for his part in an altercation with Crowder. Crowder was also called for a technical foul as result of the altercation.
While the severity of Love's injury and the length of Smith's likely suspension are still unknown, it seems likely that both players could be out when the Cavs start their second round series next weekend.
The Cavs' sweep today moves LeBron to 10-0 all-time in first round series. Cleveland's second round opponent has yet to be determined, as the No. 3 seed Chicago Bulls and No. 6 seed Milwaukee Bucks are still finishing their first round series. The Bulls currently lead Milwaukee 3-1.