And then there were two. Through all trials and tribulations, and the expectancies changing after each game, we ended up with a rematch of last year’s final. However, this time there are some differences.
The Cavs are healthy, which actually means Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are healthy. It makes all the difference in the world. Last year LeBron had to make do without his most precious wingmen and it took its toll. There was a game when they only had 7 players able to play!
Add to that the fact that Cleveland and LeBron are playing their hearts out as if to prove that if last year the whole team was healthy, they would have won.
In the Eastern Conference finals this year, they had a little more trouble than I expected, especially in those first two games in Toronto, but when they played good, they were unstoppable. There are many who claim the East is weak (and actually it is) but that doesn’t make Cleveland less good.
Taking all that into account, one might think that the Cavaliers are favorites by far. Not so fast.
After what Golden State went through in the Western finals, you can’t underestimate the heart and the confidence of this team. I’ll be honest: I thought the series would end in a stunning 4-1 to OKC in Oakland. When it didn’t work out that way I thought there was no way in hell the Warriors would win in Oklahoma City. But they did and even though yesterday before the game I thought they would cruise past the Thunder, there was time in the second quarter when again I thought they would lose. But they came back and won again.
Not only they are good, they have ice in their veins and they have a mind-boggling confidence in themselves, all credits to Steve Kerr for that.
How the duel will work out this year, it’s anybody’s guess but there are some things we can speculate about. For example, for everything I said about the Cavs, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith brought an interesting point to the table in an analysis: Kyle Lowry is good, but he isn’t Stephen Curry or Klay Thompson. So, if Kyle Lowry scored the way he did, can you imagine what the Splash Brothers can do?
And the finals last year proved Iguodala can guard LeBron, but what if Love and Irving start playing well? Will Draymond Green and Curry be able to guard them? And there’s the matter of J.R. Smith. He can be a real factor in these finals. If he starts hitting threes, the Cavs became much more dangerous. And in the paint, Tristan Thompson is more agile than Bogut, Eseli and Varejao. That could be a problem.
As a final observation, there’s Stephen Curry. Can he do it again? What he did over the last two games (in Game 6 with a huge help from Klay) is the stuff legends are made. If he can take the Warriors to the title again, I will start comparing Curry with HIM (hopefully, you know who I’m talking about).
It will be epic, it will be hard fought, hopefully a series for the ages. I’m rooting for Golden State, because I like the way they play and I’m such a Curry fan, but I think this time Cleveland will pull through. Cavs 4-3.
Savage – Loose N’ Lethal
Amon Amarth – Twilight of the Thunder God
The Undertones – The Very Best of the Undertones
The Big Short
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