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April 23, 2018 | 6:06 am EDT Update
Two driving layups from James, and two three-pointers from Korver (one assisted by James) powered a 10-2 Cleveland run late in the fourth quarter to give the Cavaliers the lead for good and allow them to escape from Bankers Life Fieldhouse by a score of 104-100. “I think the one thing we did in Game 3, we lost our composure,” said James, who had 32 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists. “We didn’t lose our composure [this time].”
One of the signature moments of Game 4 was James’ technical with 6:12 left in the game, and the Pacers leading, 91-89. As the players were about to walk toward their respective benches for a timeout, James (32 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists) shoved Stephenson away and was caught by the officials. James joked about the incident after the game, admitting that he was temporarily annoyed by Stephenson’s tenacity. “I should have never gotten a tech in the first place,” said James. “A timeout is called, this guy’s fouling me to my bench. I give him a little nudge and he falls to halfcourt. But I should know better. But I’ve been dealing with this since elementary (school). It’s like I tell you a joke, you laugh, you get caught. That’s what happened. Lance told me a joke. I a laughed. Teacher caught me. Now I got to go see the principal.”
“Honestly, it was nothing,” Jeff Green told ESPN after Stephenson was called for a foul on him with 9.0 seconds left in the game when he tried to force a jump ball and ended up bringing Green to the floor. “I mean, I may have reacted because I’m not going to allow him to do what he did, but other than that, it’s nothing. “He’s not going to fight. I’m not going to fight. It’s not worth it. I mean, if we wanted to fight, there’s a big-ass parking lot out there and we can fight. But at the end of the day, my job is to keep my composure, go to the free throw line, knock one down and then move on. It’s not worth it to give that extra energy to him.”
2 hours ago via ESPN
Wall, who has 14 or more assists in three games in this series, also held DeRozan to two points and 1-for-5 shooting in the final six minutes. “That’s John Wall,” center Marcin Gortat said. “I am glad he’s healthy. He is spoon-feeding me. I am getting fat now. Listen, if he plays the right way, he is the best point guard in the league. If he looks for his teammates and looks for the open possession where he can attack, he is the best.”
2 hours ago via ESPN
Maker, plain and simple, has been a difference-maker in this series. “I think Thon’s mental toughness is underrated,’’ Bucks guard Malcolm Brogdon said. “When you talk about toughness and grit, Thon is the definition of that. “He’s stayed locked in. He hasn’t played a lot this season, but he’s been able to come into the playoffs and play really well. There’s not many guys in the NBA who could have done that.’’ “I think he’s been the X-factor for us.’’
Spurs acting coach Ettore Messina tried at first to cloak candor, but he couldn’t resist when asked what it meant to coach Ginobili in the playoffs. “I cannot lie to you,” said Messina, who filled in for Gregg Popovich for the second consecutive game as the Spurs coach grieves the death of his wife Erin. “Even if it’s awful, because nobody would like to be in this situation for obvious reasons. At the same time, there is a little part of that that moves me to be there with Manu in these playoff games. Really, that’s something that pushes you to try to be the best possible helper for him and the team, and don’t mess up anything; just help him to have a great game.”
2 hours ago via ESPN
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