Deron Williams had a chance to be the hero in his first game with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Late in the fourth quarter Wednesday against the Boston Celtics, Williams had an open three-pointer from the corner about five seconds to play. It rimmed out and the Cavaliers lost 103-99 in a game featuring six lead changes in the last 2:06.
Williams finished with 13 points and 2 assists in 31 minutes. LeBron James had his seventh triple-double of the season with 28 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists. Kyrie Irving also finished 28 points, 15 of which came in the third quarter.
Derrick Williams added 13 points for Cleveland with Tristan Thompson finishing with 9 points and 13 rebounds.
Isaiah Thomas lead all scorers with 31 points. He hit a three-pointer with 46.4 to go and two free throws with with 28.1 seconds left to put the Celtics ahead for good. Jae Crowder, who finished with 17 points, hit two free throws with 4.2 seconds left to seal the game. Al Horford finished one point shy of a triple-double with a final line of 9 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.
The Cavs’ lead over the Celtics is now down to 3 games as the season heads into its final stretch. Cleveland is 2-1 against Boston this season with a 128-122 win on Nov. 3 and a 124-118 win on Dec. 29 coming prior to tonight’s loss. The two teams square off again on April 5 in Boston a week before the Cavs’ season ends on April 12.
Williams checked in for the first time with 3:51 left in the first quarter after Irving picked up two first quarter fouls. His first assist with the Cavs came on a pick and roll with James. Lue clearly trusts him enough already to play him 31 minutes in his first game.
The Cavs’ next play on Friday against the Atlanta Hawks in Kyle Korver’s fist game back in Atlanta since being acquired by Cleveland. Tipoff is at 7 p.m.