The Celtics led 57-47 at the break.
Something else was going on in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals while Kyrie Irving was flying through the air with the greatest of ease on his way to a 21-point third quarter and a 42-point game.
Everyone will have one eye on Irving's left ankle. What sprained ankle? - 42 points.
Kevin Love added 17 points and 17 rebounds for the Cavs, now 11-1 in the postseason.
"The Big Three were phenomenal", coach Tyronn Lue said. "But we definitely understand that this (Boston) team is not going to quit, they're going to fight, they're going to compete".
Halftime rolled around and Boston's lead was still at just 10 points. LeBron was still looking detached.
"We owe our fans a better performance and we know that", Bradley said after the Game 4 loss.
"Many times we went into offensive droughts with [Thomas] on the bench and he'd come in and save the day in the fourth quarter for us", Ainge said of Thomas. This combination got them to the Eastern Conference finals, but if they never find their superstars they could be stuck in this position for the foreseeable future.
He did nothing. Ten points. He had four fouls by the middle of the second quarter and finished the night with five turnovers.
"Kyrie Irving and LeBron James would be the two answers", Celtics coach Brad Stevens said when asked about the difference from the first half to the second. In the second half, they shot 27 of 38 (71.1 percent) from the field.
The Cavs swung the wrecking ball in the second half.
Ivanka mercoledì in visita a Comunità Sant'Egidio
Un appuntamento a margine del breve soggiorno nella Capitale - alla vigilia del G7 a Taormina - di Donald J. Città del Vaticano - Due ore fitte di lavoro.
After the Celtics took a 16-point lead midway through the second quarter, James and Irving reached a new gear, and Boston was doomed.
"Those two guys were incredible", Stevens said. "And Boston is going to make it even harder".
"They called them", he said of the officials. "Kyrie made some unbelievable shots".
Cleveland entered the final stanza after a 40-point third quarter.
The team that emerged in Game 4 was not the same as that of Game 3, as Smart did not take a shot until the 2 quarter, instead led by Jae Crowder's 11 points out of the gate.
A veteran of more than 200 National Basketball Association playoff games, James knows very well when it is time to step up his level of production, and the fourth quarter of Game 4 against the Celtics certainly proved to be one of those moments.
On the night, Irving went 15-for-22 from the floor, including 4-of-7 from long-range and 8-of-9 from the stripe. But he tightened his shoes and was able to stay in the game. Anything they can do to get that superstar is a moment to celebrate. "Look at we did without Isaiah and without the #1 pick, you can put us over the edge".
Yet, Lue said that the Celtics' unpredictability - born out of necessity, with Thomas' shutting down his season at halftime of Game 2 because of a hip injury - has made things hard after the coach had to scrap his defensive orders all catered toward limiting Thomas.
It is unclear as to when the injury occurred, but if Brown is not able to go it will be a blow for the team.
And Irving proved that he can carry this Cavs team when LeBron struggles. If he and the Cavs' other stars combine for a similar performance in Game 5, this series will be over.
Somewhere the Warriors are smiling.