This play typified just how unstoppable the Cavaliers looked in this game, and it wasn’t necessarily due to impeccable scheming like other film breakdowns in the past. LeBron James, who did not have a great shooting game, misses the three and Tristan Thompson swims past Al Horford with ease and then skies over Avery Bradley for an offensive board.
Then, Thompson quickly finds Kyrie Irving in the corner who passed up a somewhat open shot to find Kevin Love on the left wing for a wide open three that he promptly splashes, pushing the lead to 21 points in the second quarter.
Thompson devoured Boston on the boards in this game, pulling down 26.1 percent of the Cavaliers misses while he was on the floor, finishing the game with six offensive boards in his 34 minutes.
Love, for his part, feasted on a steady diet of wide open looks not too different from this one. Of his 16 field goal attempts, 11 were defined as “uncontested” by NBA.com.
The only part of the game this play doesn’t naturally encompass is LeBron James ruining Boston’s life.
These are the kinds of plays that break the opposition’s back. The Cavaliers offense is potent enough without generating extra shots on a possession, and Tristan Thompson will continue to dominate on the offensive boards in this series. If Boston can’t find a way to limit Cleveland to one shot per possession and to close out on open shooters, they’ll find this series to be far shorter than they hoped.