For the fourth year in a row - a first in American professional sports history - the same teams will meet in a sport's championship round, when the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers meet for Game 1 of the NBA Finals here Thursday night.
Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors can't be stopped, no matter what the rest of the National Basketball Association may throw at them.
"I don't even think about that, whether I'm starting or not", Green said Wednesday. I don't think the Cavaliers have a chance in this series, but no one is expecting them to be successful at all so the pressure is on the Warriors in this one.
The Cavs and Warriors both have been tested in the playoffs, each coming off a seven-games series.
"This has been one of the most challenging seasons I've had", James said. I think the Warriors win the Finals - just like a year ago - in five games. One of the Warriors' biggest annoyances during the Western Conference finals was P.J. Tucker.
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"I can't even describe how he's playing", Durant told SLAM Magazine. Golden State's preponderance of talent means that they have multiple players who can put in solid shifts against The King, and that fact, paired with the team's switch-heavy defense, lends itself to the strategy. Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said James appeared exhausted in Game 5, and then Cleveland big man Larry Nance Jr. fell into James' right leg in Game 6. "You can't put a number on it", Iguodala said when asked when he might don his uniform again". When they lose, it's because Steph Curry played poorly. The Warriors handily won Game 6 at home (as most expected), outlasted a exhausted and shorthanded Rockets side in Game 7, and the rest was history.
"Draymond was on my team, and he was just like, "Look, you can't do nothing about that".
Sceptics wonder how much juice James has left.
Tellingly, the 33-year-old also leads the playoffs charts for: points per game (34.0), points scored in the clutch (35), double-doubles (13), triple-doubles (3), secondary assists per game (1.3), points per game scored on drives (12.1), and free throw attempts per game (9.7).
He played two and a half seasons in Salt Lake City from 2007-10 and now averages 9.8 points as Cleveland's third-leading scorer.
When Nichols asked if James' relationship with Gilbert would affect his free-agency decision, James said, "We're going to see". We'll have to see but I'm all for bringing him back. And, if they kept Isaiah Thomas, they wouldn't have had him either, Instead, they got solid role players like Hill, Nance and Clarkson who have helped them to get to the Finals.
James said that he and Iguodala were almost teammates but he was picked by Philadelphia 9th in the 2004 NBA Draft one spot before Cleveland would have taken him.