BOSTON, Mass. — The Cleveland Cavaliers are heading back to the NBA Finals after beating the Boston Celtics 87-79 on Sunday night in Game 7 to win the Eastern Conference Finals for the fourth consecutive year.
Game 7 was just about what you thought it would be. It was a very low scoring affair and both teams looked a little tired. The Cavs took a couple early blows from the Celtics and kept themselves in the game after being down by ten in the second quarter to cut the Celtics lead to four at halftime.
The Cavs then outscored Boston 20-13 in the third quarter to gain control, and made just enough plays down the stretch to win the game on the road and punch their ticket back to the NBA Finals. LeBron James had another incredible elimination game performance with 35 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists to lead Cleveland to victory and his eighth straight Finals appearance. After a first half that didn’t see many shots go down from people not named LeBron James, the other Cavs stepped up down the stretch.
Jeff Green was the Cavs’ second best player on Sunday starting in place of the concussed Kevin Love as he had 19 points and eight rebounds while making some timely plays in the fourth quarter. J.R. Smith finally made a three in Boston and went off for 12 points on 3-8 shooting from three-point range. George Hill and Tristan Thompson were also good in their roles as Thompson had ten points and nine rebounds while Hill added six points to help the Cavs handle Celtics pressure late in the game to secure the Game 7 victory.
Now, it’s on to the NBA Finals where LeBron James is all too comfortable. When the 2018 NBA Finals tip-off on Thursday night, James will be playing in his eighth consecutive Finals, the third-most consecutive Finals appearances behind Bill Russell (10) and Sam Jones (9) of the legendary 50s and 60s Boston Celtics.
The opponent for the Cavaliers remains to be seen. The Warriors and Rockets play a Game 7 of their own in Houston on Monday night in the Western Conference Finals. LeBron and the Cavs surely aren’t worried about that right now though. Whoever the Cavs play, they will be heavy underdogs. The King knows the Finals better than anybody, and that gives them a fighters’ chance come Thursday.
The 2018 NBA Finals will tip-off on Thursday, May 30th at 9:00pm on ABC. Will the Cavs face a familiar Finals foe in the Golden State Warriors or will they face off against LeBron James’ friend Chris Paul and the Houston Rockets?
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