Saturday, October 29, 2022

Cavaliers 132, Celtics 123 [OT]: Donovan Mitchell, Caris LaVert combine for 82 points to hand C's second loss

The Celtics blew another double-digit lead, as they fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-123 in overtime Friday night at TD Garden.

Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum each finished with 32 points respectively, while going 22-of-41 from the field combined, but only connecting on 4-of-14 from deep.

Playing without Grant Williams (league suspension), Al Horford added 12 points and Marcus Smart chipped in 11 points, seven assists in the Celtics' second straight loss -- making them 3-2 on the season.

Caris LeVert (seven assists) and Donovan Mitchell each scored 41 points to help improve the Cavs to a 4-1 record. Evan Mobley added 19 points, 10 rebounds and Jarrett Allen also recorded a double-double of 12 points, 11 rebounds for Cleveland -- who have won four in a row and were without All-Star Darius Garland (eye laceration).

The Cavaliers opened the game on a 22-9 run, including 16 first quarter points from Mitchell, before the Celtics outscored Cleveland 60-40 the rest of the first half to take 75-62 advantage at the break against the league's second rated defense. 

The Cavs went on 19-13 spurt in the final 5:29 of the third quarter, as Boston was only ahead by four entering the final frame. The C's ended up shooting 9-of-20 in the period and turned the ball over six times.

Cleveland took a 113-112 lead -- their first since the second quarter -- on a Mitchell corner 3-pointer with 1:10 left in regulation. Following a Brown go-head layup, Allen was fouled by Horford with 20.3 seconds remaining and he hit 1-of-2 free throws to tie the game. Tatum missed a 19-footer that sent the game into overtime.

In the extra session the Cavaliers went up 119-114 in less than two minutes and never looked back, outscoring the Celtics 18-9 in OT to put them away.

Despite hitting 51.2% from the field for the game, the Celtics put up 48 points in the second half and committed a total of 20 turnovers on the night to Cleveland's 16.
"We have to have make winning plays," Celtics interim coach Joe Mazzulla said. "We can't take anything for granted."
The Celtics are 1-1 at home so far this season, as they are set to host the Washington Wizards (3-2) Sunday night. Tip-off is at 6:00 PM ET.

Game Notes:

The Cavaliers shot 51.7% from the field and 16-of-35 (45.7%) from behind the arc, while Boston was 13-of-33 from 3-point territory. The Celtics were out-rebounded 42-34 but outscored Cleveland 54-48 in the paint. The C's finished with 28 assists on 42 made baskets and the Cavs dished out 18 dimes on 45 made shots.

Joel Pavón

Photo used courtesy of Getty Images

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