Cleveland Cavaliers v Boston Celtics

LeBron James overwhelms Celtics with big scoring night, helps Cavs even series

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Cavs vs. Celtics in Eastern Conference finals (NBA.com Illustration)

LeBron James' sixth 40-plus point game of the playoffs propelled the Cavs past the Celtics on Monday night, giving Cleveland a huge win in Game 4 and evening the Eastern Conference finals series at 2-2.

James was magnificent at Quicken Loans Arena, scoring 44 points on 17-of-28 shooting with five rebounds and three assists. Kevin Love (nine points, 3-of-12 from the field) struggled with foul trouble, but Kyle Korver (14 points), Tristan Thompson (13 points, 12 rebounds) and George Hill (13 points) all stepped up in the victory.

Jaylen Brown led the Celtics with 25 points, and Terry Rozier finished with a 16-point, 11-assist double-double. But Boston just couldn't cut down the deficit enough in the second half to truly threaten Cleveland.

Check out the best highlights from Game 4 below...

Game 4 box score | Play-by-play

Final: Cavs 111, Celtics 102

11:17 p.m. ET - LeBron James (game-high 44 points) drills the dagger 3-pointer, and we are heading back to Boston all tied up at 2-2. The Celtics couldn't break through when they had opportunities, and the Cavs never let them get too close in the second half.

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11:06 p.m. ET - Of course. Just the way LeBron James drew this up.

10:57 p.m. ET - Back and forth we go. A putback by Kevin Love and transition layup by LeBron James give the Cavs an 11-point advantage. Every time the Celtics close the gap, Cleveland creates separation.

10:49 p.m. ET - A quick 7-0 run by the Celtics pushes the Cavs' lead down to eight. Cleveland needs a timeout to regroup and get LeBron James back in the game. Al Horford (15 points) and Jaylen Brown (17 points) are starting to come alive here.

End of third quarter: Cavs 89, Celtics 76

10:41 p.m. ET - That felt like a better all-around effort from the Celtics, and yet the Cavs are still up 13 points. LeBron James (35 points, 13-of-21 shooting) has been superb as usual, and role players like Kyle Korver and Tristan Thompson have contributed with Kevin Love struggling. Each member of Boston's starting five has at least 10 points, but the Celtics just can't seem to get over the hump.

10:27 p.m. ET - Game 4 hasn't always been pretty, but it feels much more competitive than any other conference finals contest we've seen so far. Both teams are battling defensively and turning up the physicality. With three minutes left in the third, the Cavs are ahead by nine points.

10:19 p.m. ET - Now Marcus Morris has five fouls. Some big calls here in the second half. Let's see how these coaches handle the lineup changes.

10:15 p.m. ET - With 7:40 on the clock in the third, Kevin Love is called for his fifth personal foul. He's going to sit on the bench for a bit. The Celtics had been attacking him in isolation, so they'll need to adjust offensively with him out of the game.

10:09 p.m. ET - A nice start to the second half for the Celtics. With the Cavs looking out of sync, Tyronn Lue calls a timeout less than three minutes into the third quarter. He clearly doesn't want to give Boston any confidence.

Halftime: Cavs 68, Celtics 53

9:50 p.m. ET - The Celtics made a brief run to cut down the deficit, but the Cavs are back up 15 heading into the locker room. Cleveland is shooting over 60 percent from the field against the league's best regular season defense. LeBron James has 22 points, four rebounds and three assists, and Kyle Korver has 14 points off the bench.

James also added another crazy stat to his long list of numbers by passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on the all-time playoff field goals list with this jumper.

9:35 p.m. ET - Kyle Korver has been excellent on both ends. He's challenging Jaylen Brown at the rim and drilling 3-pointers off the catch. His production off the bench is a huge boost for this Cavs team.

9:28 p.m. ET - The Celtics are hanging around. Marcus Smart is giving Boston some energy, but the defense just isn't what you'd expect from Brad Stevens' team. The Cavs still lead by double-digits.

9:20 p.m. ET - Kyle Korver has now blocked Jaylen Brown's shot twice. Pretty sure no one predicted that happening ahead of Game 4.

End of first quarter: Cavs 34, Celtics 18

9:10 p.m. ET - It appears the road version of the Celtics are back on the floor. Boston shoots only 28 percent from the field in the opening period, including 1-of-7 from 3-point range, while the Cavs hit a scorching 63.2 percent of their field goal attempts. Cleveland is playing with much more intensity on both ends. A great start for Tyronn Lue's squad.

9:03 p.m. ET - Kevin Love-to-LeBron James is still the best QB-WR combination in Cleveland.

8:53 p.m. ET - Both teams are in attack mode early, but the Celtics haven't been able to find the bottom of the net. After a missed dunk by Jayson Tatum, LeBron James pushes the pace in transition and drives to the basket for an and-one opportunity. The Cavs hold a six-point advantage.

8:45 p.m. ET - And we're off. Your Game 4 starters...

Celtics: Terry Rozier, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Morris, Al Horford

Cavs: George Hill, JR Smith, LeBron James, Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson

8:29 p.m. ET - Getting closer to tipoff. Here come the Cavs through the tunnel. Let's see if they can carry over the momentum from a big Game 3 win...

8:10 p.m. ET - This young fan isn't scared of entering enemy territory. He deserves love from Terry Rozier.

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