Last season was also up and down and threatened to blow up towards the end, but James and Irving carried the Cavs to their first ever championship at the expense of the Golden State Warriors.
Love followed with a 3-pointer, and after IN called timeout, a heated Thompson stormed to the bench and shouted at James. They still had lapses in focus and execution, and Thompson was screaming mad after a blown defensive assignment allowed George to hit a 3 that pulled the Pacers within 128-127 with 49 seconds left.
As for yelling at James during a timeout, Thompson brushed it off and indicated everything is now good.
Philadelphia 76ers' Dario Saric (9), from Croatia, drives past Cleveland Cavaliers' Tristan Thompson in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 31, 2017, in Cleveland.
Irving iced the game with four foul shots and Smith broke out for 18 points on six 3-pointers.
Thompson and James are represented by the same agent and have a close relationship off the court, frequently working out together and spending time together socially.
"If we play the way we played tonight in our remaining games, we will be okay", said head coach Nate McMillan. "A little miscommunication. Move forward". Move forward. Move forward. So I got to be a lot better at that and be able to keep that in-house in the locker room and when we're watching a film.
"It was a great test for us, especially with the playoffs coming", Thompson said.
"It is what it is".
"He's working every day, trying to get in shape, get his legs", Lue said of Smith's play since returning from a broken thumb.
Pacers star Paul George led the scoring with 43 points including 19 in the two periods of overtime, adding nine rebounds and nine assists.
The Cavaliers won the contest 122-105 to snap a three-game losing streak. LeBron was pissed that Thompson let George get a wide-open look at the basket, so he started barking at Thompson. Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue tried to calm James down but failed as the King waved off his coach and continued to exchange words with Thompson. In those instances, Thompson is supposed to fall back. As Indiana did all night, however, they responded, chipping away and jumping ahead 104-102 with under 90 seconds left. "Blame it on me", he joked.
After the game, LeBron said he was in the wrong and apologized for his behavior. "Paul George makes a tough shot, they get into it". Iman Shumpert was inserted into the game as part of the closing lineup. But take note: if the bench unit continues to struggle come the post-season, we may just see a different team representing the East in the Finals. However, they'll be facing their biggest threat, the Boston Celtics, this week, and the victor of the game will come away with control over the tiebreaker if the two teams were to end up with the same record in the East. Philadelphia decided it was best to sit Okafor (sore right knee) and Covington (swollen right knee) for the last seven games to get them ready for next season.