Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semi-final matchup between the Toronto Raptors and Cleveland Cavaliers felt more like a Game 7.
In the end, it was LeBron James and the Cavs prevailing for the seventh straight time over the Raptors in the playoffs 113-112 in overtime.
James finished with a game-high 26 points, 11 rebounds and 13 assists for his 21st playoff triple-double. James' teams also improved to 11-3 in overtime playoff games - only two other players have been apart of 11 overtime wins in the post-season. (Danny Ainge 12-4, Manu Ginobili 11-6).
Here are three takeaways from the Cavs Game 1 win:
Kevin Love was barely noticeable during Game 1, but it didn't matter as LeBron got help from four other teammates who went for double figures in scoring. J.R. Smith and Kyle Korver came alive scoring 20 and 19 points respectively. Smith and Korver also combined for 10 of the Cavs' 14 made three-pointers.
FINAL STAT LINES from the @cavs Game 1 win in Toronto!- NBA (@NBA) May 2, 2018
LeBron James: 26 PTS, 13 AST, 11 REB
JR Smith: 20 PTS, 5 3PM
Kyle Korver: 19 PTS, 5 3PM
Tristan Thompson: 14 PTS, 12 REB#WhateverItTakes #NBAPlayoffs
DeRozan: 22 PTS
Valanciunas: 21 PTS, 21 REB pic.twitter.com/QCzlJv72Jp
When Cleveland has the long ball falling it opens the floor up for LeBron to be LeBron.
Tristan Thompson's double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds was the shot in the arm the team needed. His defence in the second half against Jonas Valanciunas was instrumental in the Cavs' comeback win.
The Raptors couldn't make a basket when it mattered most. They were able to get makeable looks, they just simply didn't fall.
In the final four minutes of regulation and overtime, Toronto shot 3-for-18 from the field. They also went 0-for-5 from three-point range.
No matter who you play in the post-season it's tough to win when you aren't making shots.
Positive Signs for the Raptors
Cleveland didn't take their first lead of the game till overtime, and it took the Raptors offence to go into a funk to keep them in the game.
The Raptors had good ball movement at points throughout the game leading to 26 assists but coughed the ball up 14 times leading to 21 Cleveland points off those turnovers. They should be able to cut down on turnovers in Game 2.
Toronto only shot 32.1% from three-point range after shooting 41% in the first-round. They were able to get 50 of their 112 points in the paint - exposing the Cavs lack of rim protection.
The Raptors have a lot they can clean up following this heart-breaking loss - they must remember it's a marathon, not a sprint.