James surpasses Jordan as all-time playoff scoring leader

James surpasses Jordan as all-time playoff scoring leader

That means for Cleveland to win back-to-back NBA Championships, the Cavaliers have to find a way to steal a taco for Reggie Miller/a game on the road in Oracle.

In 2016, it looked like everything was going the Warriors' way.

The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook installed Golden State as a minus-260 favorite, with Cleveland at plus-220, meaning a $100 bet on the Warriors would win $38.46 and the same bet on the Cavaliers would win $220, according to ESPN.

But it all evaporated.

A veteran of more than 200 National Basketball Association playoff games, James knows very well when it is time to step up his level of production, and the fourth quarter of Game 4 against the Celtics certainly proved to be one of those moments. "We're in the NBA Finals".

"I told our guys: 'We made a lot of great strides, but this pain is part of the path to what we ultimately want to be,"' he said. But then he added this: "OK, maybe a slight preference for Cleveland. We were talking about the same thing [how boring the playoffs have been] at the same time previous year".

The Warriors are a super team and LeBron James is a super human.

And they're doing this without their head coach. Durant signed a two-year, $54.3 million contract with the Warriors last offseason.

Kerr is still involved, albeit donning sweatpants.

As Kevin Durant walked off the Pepsi Center floor back in December, a Nuggets fan riding the wave of Denver's resounding upset victory over Golden State had some parting words for the Warriors' newest star. But it's uncertain if Kerr will return to the bench for the NBA Finals.

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Thomas said he never doubted that coach Brad Stevens and general manager Danny Ainge were more concerned about his future than getting him back into the game.

After allowing the Celtics to seize the early momentum in Game 4, the Cavs barely gave them the chance in Game 5. The dominance of the Warriors and Cavaliers have sapped the rest of the playoffs of its typical drama.

On July 4, with a 351-word post on The Players' Tribune, Durant announced he was joining the Warriors.

The NBA's championship eras have always been built by its biggest stars. That's just the confidence we have in each other. We didn't talk about championships or anything. We've got to come out and play. We were in a good place to be able to win a second game in a row, but it's been unfortunate for us. We already made our series predictions; below are our picks for series MVP.

Meanwhile, the Cavaliers have been rolling as well, sweeping the Pacers and Raptors before dominating the Celtics in five games. In 2015, James had to carry an injury-depleted roster and came up short in six games.

The NBA Playoffs are a proving ground for players, a time to see whether their talents match up with the ability to handle the pressure of increased physicality, a higher level of intensity and meaningful moments at every point of the game.

Can the Cavs do it again? Golden State won 73 games, reached the seventh game of the NBA Finals and then let core players such as Andrew Bogut and Harrison Barnes go to make room for Durant. So they deserve a lot more credit than, well, they're talented.

James passed Michael Jordan (5,987 points) for the most playoff points in history and finished with 35 points, eight rebounds and eight assists in 35 minutes.

Before the game was over, James had broken the NBA's all-time playoff scoring list - racking up a career postseason total of 5,995 points and bumping His Airness Michael Jordan down to No. 2. "I think I fell in love with the game because of Mike". I started to slash more and move more without the ball, shoot more standstill 3s and figure out ways I could be more productive than just having the ball in isolation. Jordan was in his rearview mirror and still James deflected the attention like a kick-out to an open shooter in the corner.

The Red Wings won the rematch in an all home team seven-game series the following year. So the Warriors instead swept Portland, the team that chased down Denver for the eighth playoff spot in the Western Conference.

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