Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James went off for 35 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals and 1 block on Thursday as the Cavs scored a 135-102 blowout win over the Boston Celtics, advancing to the NBA Finals.
As they celebrated defending their Eastern Conference title Thursday night, the Cleveland Cavaliers weren't ready to focus on defending their National Basketball Association championship.
No matter what, Mike Brown is making money during the 2017 NBA Finals. But now you've got rest, you're not playing back-to-backs, you get to focus on one team and lock in on them.
Lue said he's not thinking about the Warriors, saying of the Celtics offense, "The stuff they're running, it's harder to defend than Golden State's [offense] for me", pointing to the amount of screening, cutting, and passing in Boston's offense. There was nearly too much historical context to dissect, and so James did what his instincts told him to do.
"This is great learning for how far we have to go", Stevens said. "That's all, you guys going to have the conversations about who's the greatest of all time, things of that nature". And defensively, they're a lot better.
The Celtics left TD Garden after their Game 2 beat-down anything but sure they could give their fans at least one more home game. They've combined to play six series. The Giants won the Series 5-3 in the final best-of-nine matchup as a banged-up Ruth got just one plate appearance during the final three games, all won by the Giants.
"I've been very blessed the last few years to be a part of this league and play on the big stage", said Cleveland star LeBron James, who has now reached the Finals for the eighth time - including each of the last seven years.More news: Trump, Abbas Call for Revival of Palestinian-Israeli Peace Talks
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Cleveland jumped to a quick 14-5 lead and were up by 43-27 after the first quarter - posting a franchise record for points in a quarter of a playoff game.
"When you're growing up and you're seeing Michael Jordan, it's nearly like a god, so I didn't ever believe I could be Mike", James said. He watched Game 5 in street clothes.
"I want to win a championship", Thomas said "And being so close to getting to the finals, that makes you want it that much more". Yet, I can't shed the thought that much of the success with the over came from their indifference toward playing much defense as they knew they are dominant force in the East. "I think I fell in love with the game because of Michael, just seeing what he was able to accomplish", James said.
"I'm saying to myself, 'They can not tie up this series". Many would argue that this is the best team he's ever had around him.
The Celtics did defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 3 without an injured Thomas, however, prompting "Toucher & Rich" to ask Ainge about the theory that the team might be better in the guard's absence. In game four, the Celtics got contributions from the entire team with four players scoring in double figures, two more guys at nine points, and another finishing with eight points. The 93 points produced together by Irving, James and Love are the most they have amassed as a group and the second highest for a trio in team playoff history.
"They are a really good team, we have a ton of respect for them", Cavs guard Kyle Korver said.