Final score: Cleveland Cavaliers 96, Orlando Magic 95
Analysis: In an epic thriller, LeBron James made what he called the biggest shot of his career by hitting a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to give Cleveland the thrilling win to tie the series at 1-1 heading into Game 3 on Sunday. The Cavaliers blew a 23-point lead only to have James save the day for the Cavaliers.
The go-getter: The MVP scored 35 points including the game-winner. He had six turnovers and Mickael Pietrus made it tough on him late, but he found a way to make a 3-pointer at the top of the key. To deliver in that fashion is as good as it gets.
The brick-layer: Rafer Alston (Orlando) shot a dismal 1-of-7 from the field for four points. Just didn’t play well on either end of the floor, took some crazy shots and missed all three of his 3-point shot attempts.
The stunning stats: Before James made that game-winning 3-pointer, he had only four points on 1-of-5 shooting from the field.
The play: The shot was great, but for Mo Williams to have the patience to wait for James to get free was just as good. He had Zydrunas Ilgauskas open in the corner for 3, but as Williams said after the game, option A, B,C, and D were all for James.
What’s next: Game 3 Sunday at Orlando, 8:30 p.m.
What to expect: Look for the Magic to put Pietrus on James more. The way he forced LeBron to go left and actually blocked his shot worked in Orlando’s favor. As for Cleveland, if it is fortunate enough to build a big lead in the first half, it can’t afford to blow it in Orlando or the Cavaliers will find themselves on the losing end.