By Nathan Beighle
Following the first-quarter onslaught by LeBron James, the Cleveland Cavaliers eventually went into the half up seven. From there, it all went downhill.
The third quarter was really the start of the Cleveland Cavaliers collapse. From up seven at the half to down seven at the start of the fourth, the Cavs were a disturbing -14 in the third.
Let’s look at some other rather worrisome stats from the third quarter. For starters, the Cavaliers as a team only had three players score. James had 7, Love 11 and Thompson 4. George Hill played over 10 minutes in the quarter and failed to score.
Overall, the Cavs had a net rating of -56.3 for the quarter, a figure like that for even one quarter can damage a team for the entire game.
However, it wasn’t by accident that the Cavaliers were being outplayed. They were just flat out being outworked.
The C’s were making several game-changing plays just like this one.
Smart was tied for fifth in scoring in Game 2 but ended with a jaw-dropping +21. While sometimes +/- can be deceiving, this time it’s not. Smart was a difference maker in this game and no Cavalier came close to matching his unrivaled...