Durant gets chance to follow LeBron's path to National Basketball Association title

Ross Houston
June 5, 2017

Although everyone remembers the one stop Love had against Stephen Curry on the perimeter in Game 7 of last year's Finals, he's a liability on that end - particularly when the Warriors go small.

The first came in the first round of the playoffs when the Boston Celtics' Kelly Olynyk yanked Kevin Love's shoulder out of its socket.

Acting Warriors coach Mike Brown, speaking Wednesday to ESPN's Michael Wilbon, said he didn't know whether Kerr would return Thursday night for Game 1 and that the team wouldn't know until closer to the 9 p.m. ET tipoff.

"There's no time to be disappointed", Irving said. Making matters worse was a lack of scoring help from any of their role players. "But in terms of everything that was inside of my knee stability-wise, everything was fine".

"I've had a week off", Thompson said. "Because right now, I think we're treating them very poorly when it comes to taking nights off that have nothing to do with injury". But this also may be the best all-around version of James, who is averaging 32.5 points on almost 57 percent shooting, and adding 8.0 rebounds and 7.0 assists per game.

For the game's best player, basketball was overshadowed by racism.

The Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers have spent the past six weeks dismantling all comers, methodically advancing toward the NBA Finals rubber match the entire basketball universe has been waiting for.

Riley was given the opportunity to wish James well on Saturday, and his message was lukewarm at best. As long as Golden State limits turnovers, they should be able to stay productive offensively. James said he would do his best to be ready for the series opener when his mind was elsewhere, concerned for his wife and children back in Ohio. Frankly, the NBA's regular season was nearly a waste of time.

But now, a chance at a second title in three years - a chance to put away memories of a terribly botched pass that basically set up the final Cavaliers run a year ago - is welcomed.

Riley did answer, but with a twist, as the Hall of Famer made reference to the Los Angeles Lakers teams he coached.

The Cavaliers are going to have to make some adjustments to slow down the Warriors.

Pressed on if he was rooting for James, Riley said, "I'd like to see a great Finals".

Warriors starting center Zaza Pachulia returned after missing the final two games at San Antonio with a bruised right heel and contributed eight points and six rebounds. "I think Cleveland in this series, they're going to have to have all their guys shooting the ball well, playing efficiently".

The Cavs held their last intense practice Monday afternoon. And I even tried to tell him, 'Steve, you should do it. and if you don't feel like you're OK, half through the game, just go back in the back, ' " Brown said.

Despite the hype and the presence of national media, Lue said it can be productive.

"That's when they become very risky because those guys, they sprint down the lane, they sprint to the 3-point line, they put a lot of pressure on your defense", James said.

Even if he does go cold, he remains a defensive nuisance and an emotional barometer that has yet to break. And if he feels confident going into a series against an overpowering Warriors team filled with four All-Stars, then the rest of Cleveland should, too.

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