LeBron leads, others follow

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (left) drives to the basket against Toronto Raptors forward DeMarre Carroll. [Reuters]

LeBron James sparked defending NBA champion Cleveland over Toronto while James Harden powered the Houston Rockets to an epic rout of San Antonio in second-round playoff openers on Monday night.

James scored 35 points and grabbed 10 rebounds while Kyrie Irving added 24 points and 10 assists and Kevin Love had 18 points and nine rebounds as the Cavaliers ripped the visiting Raptors 116-105 in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference matchup.

Four-time NBA Most Valuable Player James hit 13-of-23 shots from the floor and 7-of-8 from the free throw line while Tristan Thompson contributed 11 points and 14 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who James warned will be better in Game Two.

"I feel like I'll be a lot better on Wednesday," James said. "Little bit of rhythm here and conditioning there, I think a lot of our mistakes we were able to cover up for because our energy level was high."

Harden had 20 points and 14 assists while Trevor Ariza scored 23 points and Clint Capela contributed 20 points and 13 rebounds as the Rockets dumped the host Spurs 126-99 to start their best-of-seven Western Conference series.

Stay updated with the latest sports news. Text the word 'SPORTS' to 22840 and receive local and international sports news as it happens.

"It's just one win," Harden said. "It's a good win, but we've got to be ready for Game Two. They've got a lot of fight in them. We missed a few shots. We've got to play better in game two."

The Rockets sank a team playoff record 22 3-pointers on 50 attempts, inflicting the most 3-pointers allowed by the Spurs in playoff history.

San Antonio trailed by as many as 39 points in the team's largest game-one defeat in playoff history. The Spurs 69-39 half-time deficit was their worst in playoff history.

"We lost and they won and they played better," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "We competed but I don't think we executed well."

Next Story
Blow to Chelsea and United as Lewandowski agrees personal terms with new club

Robert Lewandowski is set to force his way out of Bayern Munich in the summer

Jose Mourinho interested in another Arsenal star in the summer

Manchester United signed Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal in January after the Chilean ran down his contract forcing the Gunners to cash in on him before h

Roberto Firmino reveals exactly how Phillipe Coutinho's move to Barcelona affected Liverpool

Roberto Firmino has opened up on how Phillipe Coutinho's January departure affected Liverpool.

KPL Free-To-Air rights: Do clubs know what it means?

Broadcast business: KPL’s decision to break up rights monopoly misunderstood by industry players

Nemanja Matic says Jose Mourinho is ‘difficult’ to work under

Nemanja Matic has revealed that Jose Mourinho can be "very difficult" to ....

Lucky Kenyan hits SportPesa jackpot

is the newest millionaire in town after he won a whooping Sh

More Stories
Champs Laiser Hill, St Anthony’s retain titles

National boys’ basketball and hockey champions Laiser Hill and St Anthony’s Boys Kitale retained the regional titles in 2018.

NBA: Russell Westbrook reaches triple ton as Thunder strikes Hawks

Russell Westbrook snared the 100th triple-double of his career on Tuesday as the Oklahoma City Thunder closed in on a playoff berth with a 119-107

Schools: Kaya Tiwi reign supreme in county games

Kaya Tiwi School won both the boys and girls' basketball titles during the Kwale County Secondary Schools Term One Games at Mazera Boys High School at

Big shots in bruising battle

Big shots in chase for county slots

Champs Kaya Tiwi in ‘group of death’

Champs Kaya Tiwi in ‘group of death’

KUSA: Zetech students raid Co-operative’s safe

Zetech reigned supreme over Co-operative University in a Kenya Universities Sports Association basketball match at the University of Nairobi over the

College Games: KISE retain men and women goalball titles

Thogoto Teachers Training College yesterday retained their Nairobi Region women’s basketball title on the final day of this year’s Nairobi Region Teac

NBA great Kobe Bryant scoops Oscars award for the Best Animated short film

Kobe Bryant wins prestigious Oscars award for the Best Animated Short film.

Basketball: Kenya Ports Authority raid clubs for new players

There is little time to rest for newly crowned national men's basketball champions Kenya Ports Authority (KPA).

Off to flying start: Kaya Tiwi shrug off opponents to top Matuga Sub County games

Off to flying start: Kaya Tiwi shrug off opponents to top Matuga Sub County games