LeBron James Leads Cavs to Another NBA Finals Appearance

Haffey  Getty Images

Haffey Getty Images

Kyrie Irving exploded as reigning National Basketball Association champions the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Boston Celtics 112-99 in game four of the Eastern conference finals on Tuesday.

Irving's final 3 of the quarter was just mean.

The Cavaliers outscored the Celtics 65-42 in the second half, thanks to Irving's playoff career high in points. The Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors are going to meet in the 2017 NBA Finals after LeBron James and the Cavaliers beat the Boston Celtics in Game 5 on Thursday, 135-102. More likely, Lue was trying to diffuse any tension with a member of the local Cleveland media, something that could have spiraled into an uglier situation.

The All-Star point guard rolled his ankle in the third quarter of Game 4 when he stepped on Terry Rozier's foot.

"In the back of my mind, I was like, I'm saying to myself, 'We can not - they can not tie up this series, '" Irving said. "Every night he brings it for us, sets the tone, and it's no different". In the last game he had a very Kevin Love stat line of 17 points and 17 rebounds. They finished 19-for-41 from 3-point range, with James and Irving each hitting four.

James scored 35 points and added eight rebounds, eight assists and three steals, and Kyrie Irving posted 24 points. Al Horford contributed 16 points and seven assists. Heck, even back-up point guard Deron Williams got in on the action, scoring 14 points in the first half. Twenty-four of those points came in the second half, all while managing those four fouls.

The Cavs were up 43-27 after one-quarter and pushed their lead into the 30s by the third quarter. Golden State won the first meeting back in 2015 in six games.

The Celtics have to know they let one get away Tuesday night, but may well have just fallen victim to the fatigue that resulted from the dramatic - and totally unexpected - win in Game 3.

Led by its Big Three, Cleveland quickly built a 21-point lead in the first quarter, while getting lots of contributions from their teammates.

I know the Warriors are motivated for this series and Draymond said he wants to kill the Cavs after the way a year ago ended. "We've got to be a lot better for sure".

But if Games 3 and 4 are any indication, it wont be easy. The series then shifts to Cleveland for Games 3 and 4 on June 7 and 9.

Bradley shot just 7 of 19 from the field. LeBron will have a hard time driving and finishing when JaVale McGee is in the game - certainly more hard than anything he's faced in these playoffs. His acrobatics in the third quarter, even after he turned his ankle driving through the lane, were absolutely wonderful. The Cavs only had two points off turnovers, while Boston had 13.

"(The Celtics are), like I told you guys before, it's like we're preparing for a whole new team.

"We made progress (throughout the series), but not good enough". We've all seen him do fantastic things. But that's what great teams do. But they deserve credit.

Everybody spent so much attention on how the Celtics would adjust on offense without Isaiah Thomas in their lineup, that nobody considered that the Cavaliers would also have to adjust to defending the Celtics without Thomas. It's possible Thomas could undergo surgery on his hip.

"The kid is special", James said.

In Cleveland, the Celtics ran into the ultimate buzzsaw.

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