Wednesday, 20 June, 2018


Warriors' Mike Brown: Steve Kerr may be back for the Finals

Celtics' valiant effort falls short in Game 4 loss            Mark Murphy    
  Tuesday Celtics' valiant effort falls short in Game 4 loss Mark Murphy Tuesday
Noah Ferguson | 29 May, 2017, 07:27

Cleveland Cavaliers set up their third straight NBA Finals appearance against Golden State Warriors with a dominant 135-102 win over Boston Celtics.

Cleveland's 4-1 series win gives it a 12-1 record this postseason and sets up a third consecutive matchup with Western Conference champion Golden State, the team it beat in the Finals last season to claim the franchise's first championship.

While there have been 14 rematches in NBA Finals history, this year's meeting between LeBron James' Cleveland Cavaliers and Stephen Curry's Golden State Warriors will be the first trilogy in league history.

With a three-point basket in the 3rd quarter, LeBron James passed his hero, Michael Jordan, to become the NBA's all-time leader in playoff points scored. In 2015, Irving finished with 23 points on 46 percent shooting, seven rebounds, six assists, four steals and two blocks in before going down with an injury in overtime of Game 1.

LeBron James was once among thousands of youngsters striving to "be like Mike", but the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar never dreamed he'd be mentioned in the same breath as Chicago Bulls icon Michael Jordan as one of basketball's greatest.

James told a press conference, posted by NBA TV on Twitter: "I wear the number because of Mike".

James, arguably the premier player in the game, leads a Cavs side that features the sublime talents of Australian-born, but U.S. loyal, point guard Irving and sharpshooting big man Love.

Cleveland played much better defense in Game 4, as Boston failed to score 100 points and every Celtics player was held under 20 points.

The series resumes Tuesday night at Quicken Loans Arena before returning to Boston on Thursday for a Game 5 that didn't appear necessary until the Celtics stormed back from 21 down and won when Avery Bradley's 3-pointer danced an Irish jig on the rim before falling with 0.01 seconds left. Gerald Green, Terry Rozier and Jae Crowder all reached double figures too, as the Celtics chased the game. James "quietly' added 34 points of his own in spite of spending most of the night with four fouls to his name". Aldridge was twice held to eight points in the conference finals, including a 7-for-17 effort in Game 4. I'll also be interested to see if Channing Frye plays more of a role or if we'll see Richard Jefferson on the floor in the next round.

"I'm really happy we did what we did last night for him", Popovich said. That is because Golden State is 12-0 in the playoffs, but let's face it please, the National Basketball Association isn't what it once was.

When his three-pointer splashed with a half-second left in the third quarter, the Cavs led 87-80. Jordan appeared in 179 postseason games; James played his 212th.

"There's choices", Stevens said.

But the Cavaliers superstar says his pursuit is about leaving a legacy to motivate the next generation of players.

"But none of that matters if you don't take care of your business prior (to The Finals)".

Lue paused for several seconds before responding to a question about the third and fourth fouls called on James, who was whistled for barely touching Marcus Smart on a jumper and then was called for a charge. We've got to come out and play. "We'll see how they match up against Golden State and how that goes". Warriors 2017 NBA Finals scheduleEven if the NBA's top two teams have steamrolled their way right to the place everybody figured they'd be when the season started all those months ago. Held a pregame moment of silence for the victims of the Manchester bombing.

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