In LeBron James' 200th career playoff game, the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Indiana Pacers 109-108 in a physical affair, as C.J. Miles missed the go-ahead shot at the buzzer.
Offense was the order of the first half, as the Cavaliers' first 2 quarters was nothing short of extraordinary. They shot 25-41 (61%), shooting 70% from the field at one point, taking a 66-59 lead into the half.
If offense was the focal point of the first half, physicality would be the topic of the second. Both teams had a desire for the ball, with players from both sides diving for the ball, taking charges and hustling for loose rebounds.
The number one sign of physicality would be a number of foul calls, and boy was there a lot, especially offensive fouls. Both teams combined for 42 personal fouls and -- free throws, with the Pacers edging out the Cavs on the made FT front 17-12.
Cleveland led the game by 12 at one point, before the Pacers, led by Stephenson and George, stormed back to take the lead with 3:30 to play.
The Cavaliers showed their championship poise however, holding out to take the 1-point win.
LeBron led the team with 31 points, also posting 6 rebounds and 13 assists.
Kyrie followed LeBron, putting up 23 points to go along with 6 assists, but shot a lowly 1-9 from three. His defense was a strong point however, especially in the dying minutes of the fourth, collecting a steal.
Tristan Thompson also deserves a mention, as he grabbed 12 rebounds, 6 of them being offensive boards, something that really helped the Cavs when they stalled on offense.
For the Pacers, Paul George was the only standout performance in an otherwise lackluster showing from Indiana.
PG13 had this to say about LeBron before the game:
"I'm tired of losing, tired of losing to this guy" [LeBron]
George finished with 26 points, including an extremely long three to bring the game within one with 40 seconds remaining, extending his streak of 20+ point games to 13, something he'll need to do for the next game at least if the Pacers want a chance to level the series at 1-1.
Lance Stephenson had a slow start to the game, but turned it on towards the end of the contest, finishing with 16 points on 8-12 shooting, demanding the ball at some points in the 4th.
Other notable performances on the Indiana side included Jeff Teague, who posted 15 points and 4 assists, and Myles Turner, who had 11 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals in only his 2nd playoff series of his young career.
Game 2 will also be in Cleveland. Tipoff is at 7pm ET, and will be shown on TNT.