Boston's strategy has been simple but also incredibly hard to execute: Put your most muscular players in the game and hope they can withstand the beating James administers while also taking away Cleveland's other looks.
Only one player in National Basketball Association history has done anything approaching what LeBron James is doing at age 33 in the playoffs. James and Kevin Love were the only players to score in double figures. He scored five of his seven points in Game 5 from the free throw line.
In fact, Stevens seemed excited about the prospect of his young team playing in a Game 7.
James isn't going to go away quietly.
"Not at all", he said.
"The goal for that change was we're going to have to play big some", Brad Stevens told reporters after the game.
Even Stephen Curry enjoyed Chris Paul mocking his shimmy
Houston has outscored the Warriors by 11 points in 47 minutes during the West finals with Harden on the floor and Paul resting. Compare odds from multiple different online sportsbooks and shop for the best lines at our newBasketball Odds & Betting Page.
"We're right there, man, right there", Boston's Marcus Morris told NBC Sports Boston last night. If they were to win, they would face whoever comes out of the Western Conference - the Warriors or Rockets.
Celtics: Own a 37-0 record when leading a series 2-0. Tatum (24 points) scored easily on a play that at the time increased the Boston lead to 16 points. Friday night, the Boston Celtics had their entire organization in town and a room ready to accept the Eastern Conference title, and once again, the Cavs shut it down. This series has all the looks of a seven-game thriller as both teams have been solid at home so far, so I like LeBron and the Cavaliers bouncing back here, but I just don't feel comfortable laying this many points.
When the NBA's All-Rookie team was announced earlier this week, two players were voted in as unanimous first-team selections: Philadelphia's Ben Simmons, and Utah's Donovan Mitchell.
James exploded for 46 points on top of 11 rebounds and 9 assists to power Cleveland in the must-win Game 6, which the Cavs controlled all throughout on the way to tying the best-of-7 series at 3-3.
"I didn't see him coming, it was bad", Tatum said.
And, for the first time this season, maybe even showed signs of his age (33 years) and 15 seasons in the league. Appearing on Dale & Keefe Thursday, Mannix said he believes Golden State is the better matchup.
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