Following a blowout win in the opener of the 2018 East finals, the Boston Celtics host the Cleveland Cavaliers for Game 2 on Tuesday night.
The game is scheduled to start at about 8:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast nationally on ESPN. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can watch it live on your computer, phone or streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
DirecTV Now: ESPN is included in all four of DirecTV Now’s channel packages. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial no matter what package you choose, and you can then watch the game live on your computer via the DirecTV Now website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app.
Hulu With Live TV: In addition to a Netflix-like on-demand streaming library, Hulu now also offers a bundle of live TV channels, including ESPN. You can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV” right here, and you can then watch a live stream of the game on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app.
Game 1 couldn’t have gone much better for the Celtics, who doubled up Cleveland in the first quarter (36-18) and proceeded to coast to the 108-83 victory. They shot 51.2 percent from the field, four starters (Marcus Morris, Al Horford, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown) hit multiple threes and scored at least 16 points, and the defense held LeBron James to 15 points on 5-of-16 shooting to go with seven turnovers.
That’s just the fourth time all season LeBron has been held to 15 points or less (that’s counting the last game of the regular season in which he scored 10 points in 10 minutes then sat the rest of the way), and it was far-and-away the least productive game of a postseason that he has thoroughly dominated. Marcus Morris, the self-acclaimed best LeBron defender outside of Kawhi Leonard, did an excellent job 1-on-1 against James, but it was an overall pristine team effort on defense from the C’s.
For as good as the Celtics are defensively, though, it’s hard to imagine LeBron having any more games quite like that.
“I expect him to have a big response,” Kevin Love said. “He’s always done it even before he came back to Cleveland and since I’ve been here he’s always responded big. I imagine it’ll be a lot like Game 2 against Indiana.”
In that particular game, LeBron–following an 18-point loss to the Pacers in Game 1 of the first round–poured in a super-efficient 46 points (17-of-24 FG, 2-of-5 3PT, 10-of-13 FT) to go with 12 rebounds, five assists and just three turnovers to lift the Cavs to a crucial victory.
Of course, for as transcendent as James can be, he’ll need some help. In Game 1, Kevin Love was the leading scorer with 17 points, but he was just 1-of-4 from three. Kyle Korver was 1-of-5 from three. JR Smith was 0-of-3 from three. Rodney Hood and Jordan Clarkson tallied 21 points off the bench, but they needed a combined 23 shots to get there. As a team, the Cavs shot 4-of-26 from deep and finished with a putrid 86.6 defensive rating. Again, give Boston credit for their effort on that end of the court. They’re capable of switching almost anything, their rotations are pristine, and they didn’t give up a lot of clean looks, but Cleveland still nevertheless needs to be better.
Following Tuesdays contest, the teams head to Cleveland and get a mini break before Game 3 on Saturday night.