Morning Shootaround: Closer to Extinction
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Sunglasses & Advil:

The Toronto Raptors almost won a game . . . until they didn't. It was a very close and competitive game for three quarters and DeMar DeRozan showed up. However, a fourth quarter of basketball was on the itinerary and the Raptors did not get the memo. The Cleveland Cavaliers started the fourth quarter on a 20-3 run and crushed all of Drake's dreams. The Cavaliers defeated the Raptors 115-94. Despite DeRozan's 37 points, getting outscored by 19 points in a quarter is a wrath no team can survive. The Raptors shot 11% from three (2-for-18) and got outrebounded by 24 on the glass.

LeBron James happened. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love chipped in. Kyle Korver made threes. Tristan Thompson grabbed rebounds. But mostly, LeBron James happened, especially in the fourth quarter. James finished with 35 points, 8 rebounds and 7 assists on 56% shooting and 100% dominance. This one is as good as over.

CLE leads series 3-0 | Kyle Lowry (ankle sprain) did not play.

The San Antonio Spurs finally had a binary star system last night. As opposed to a solar system in which all components revolve around one star, like the solar system in which we live, a binary star system consists of two stars that are orbiting around one another.

What the hell did you just read? LaMarcus Aldridge has a pulse! In fact, you could argue he was the reason the Spurs were alive and with a lead in the first half. He scored 26 points (12-for-20) and grabbed 7 rebounds. However, he was extremely active on the defensive end, constantly stripping the ball at the rim and came up with four blocks. Kawhi Leonard got off to a cold start but eventually capped off the night with a quiet 26 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists.

https://twitter.com/cjzero/status/860714528895635456

James Harden dropped 43 in the loss, despite another rough outing. Trevor Ariza scored 15 in the first half and scored 2 points for the remainder of the game. Nene, Lou Williams and Ryan Anderson all failed to make a field goal; Eric Gordon was 3-for-10 for 9 points. With such limited help, especially from downtown, the Rockets were incapable of outlasting the duo of Leonard and Aldridge.

SAS leads series 2-1

When the Sun falls, then the Moonlight:

Coming off the most competitive loss of the series thus far, Utah has to feel pretty good, all things considered. Gordon Hayward had a phenomenal game and the Jazz are headed home. This is not to say that the Warriors are going to lose a game, but if they are, it's probably this one. The Jazz are a confident group that, with a little bit of luck, in addition to a lot of luck, are capable of stealing a game from the Warriors.

There isn't much more to this series. The Warriors have looked a bit disengaged for stretches and haven't come close to losing to this Utah team. Assuming they show up to Salt Lake City and put five guys out on the court, this one will likely be over by the second quarter.

George Hill (toe) is questionable for Game 3.

GSW @ UTAH | 8:30 PM ET on ABC | GSW leads series 2-0

Lines of the Night:

LeBron James: 35 points (9-for-16) | 8 rebounds | 7 assists | W

James Harden: 43 points (14-for-28) | 5 assists | 3 blocks | L

Kawhi Leonard: 26 points (9-for-20) | 10 rebounds | 7 assists | W

DeMar DeRozan: 37 points (12-for-23) | 3 assists | L

LaMarcus Aldridge: 26 points (12-for-20) | 7 rebounds | 4 steals | W


The 2017 Ballislife All-American Basketball Game will take place around 8:00 PM ET from Long Beach, CA. The game, presented by Eastbay, will be streamed live on Facebook.