Sunday, 25 June, 2017

Capsule preview of the Warriors-Cavaliers NBA Finals matchup

Isaac Mcdaniel | 02 June, 2017, 10:44

This isn't a knock on the Cavs; it's a testament to how good the Warriors are. In other words, if another Warrior shook loose, it wouldn't be so easy for James to help off of Durant, who would can open shots. Cleveland has Kyrie Irving, who scored 26 points in last year's final game.

Luckily for the Cavs, their stars seem to be playing their best at just the right time. LeBron needs to be focused on defending KD and allow Kyrie to dance and finish at the rim. i expect Klay Thompson to take the assignment of guarding Kyrie and if so Thompson will use most of his energy on defense and not be as productive offensively. We're still getting better. Most importantly he must defend Kevin Durant in the first and fourth quarter.

Season series: Cavaliers, 3-1.

Do you know how many games the Astros will play from June 1-18? In the Boston series alone, he showcased his ability to score in multiple areas of the floor. But, with teammates like James and Irving, among others, in Cleveland who can create space, having a sharpshooter like Love on the outside is important.

Green is also an x-factor because of his potential for losing his self-control and pushing himself off the court.

And, in a series that is expected to go six or seven games, that game could be the difference. In 2016, he struggled immensely, the worst he has ever played in his career.

The Warriors have dealt with adversity - particularly Durant's knee injury and coach Steve Kerr's absence caused by his ongoing back problems. But this time around, that won't be the case. They've lost all of one game since March 14.

He seems to agree with that.

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Kevin Love doesn't see his team as the underdogs in this series, per APNews.com.

"I think it'll be cool. That's the only pressure I worry about", said Durant. The Lakers made it to the NBA Finals nine times in 12 years during roughly the same time period. "We go out and just try to be as great as we can be every night", said James.

Speaking of Game 4, that was when Golden State practically handed Cleveland the championship, courtesy of Draymond's fists. "Nowadays a lot of people want to see Golden State-Cavs". Let's take a look at three keys to victory for them. Let the Warriors score 103 points, they're nearly certainly going to win.

Three-point shooting played a critical role in Cleveland's success against the Warriors last June. "They're familiar with this team".

"When he's making shots", Lue said, "we're a tough team to beat".

"We know it's going to be a battle".

While much of the focus leading up to Cavs vs. Warriors III has been on how the addition of Kevin Durant to Golden State's star core led by Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson will make life even more hard for LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and the Cavaliers, there are several other newcomers to the rivalry who could play a key role in determining which team wins a second title in this trilogy.

This year's finals matchup also marks the third consecutive year that tickets at Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena are significantly cheaper than tickets at Golden State's Oracle Arena in Oakland.

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