James passes Jordan, Cavs back in Finals with 135-102 win

In Game 2, he scored 53 points - one shy of John Havlicek's franchise record. Waiting on young pieces like Marcus Smart, Brown and Markelle Fultz to mature while surrounding them with future assets may be a better long-term bet for the green than Ainge pushing his chips towards the middle for a bigger splash this summer. I'll let them decide who the G.O.A.T. was.

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) trades high-five's with Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) during the first half of Game 5 of the NBA basketball Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics, in Boston. To put those 36 points in perspective, the Celtics scored 42 points total the second half.Stevens would rather play Kelly Olynyk (15 points in Game 3) and Jonas Jerebko (10 points) than Johnson anyway."He's a special talent", James said about Irving. "I'm proud of our group, and I felt like we grew as the year went on". "Collectively, we can take away what an elite (team) looks like. So I didn't ever believe I could be Mike".

LeBron James passed Michael Jordan to become the NBA's career playoff scoring leader and Cleveland embarrassed the Celtics again, advancing to a third consecutive NBA Final meeting with the Golden State Warriors.

"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. Winning the No. 1 seed in the East was an accomplishment despite a season that was full of injuries.

The mismatch with Cleveland was the first taste of the Eastern Conference Finals for almost every member of the Celtics roster outside of Horford.

As much as this series was about James, Irving helped turn the tide of the series with a 42-point effort in Game 4.

Thomas, and the rest of the Eastern Conference, has had to sit by and helplessly watch as LeBron James has stormed to the NBA Finals with the conference's bid for each of the previous seven seasons.

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James (seventh place, 28,787 points) still trails Jordan (fourth place, 32,292 points) on the all-time regular-season scoring list. Still, they beat the Cavaliers in Cleveland the next game before falling easily in Games 4 and 5. "I thought we played a little too haphazard tonight".

"They care about my health, not just being a basketball player", Thomas said. Not the way we wanted to finish, but we came a long ways from the beginning of the year, came together.

"They made it this far". It was 1 versus 2.

"I'm glad he finally admitted that he owes me money because for many years he wouldn't admit that he owed me money".

There's also the irony that Brown, the first coach who took James to an NBA Finals in 2007 - Cleveland was swept by San Antonio - will now coach against him, likely in the same leading role he's had for Golden State since head coach Steve Kerr was forced to take a break because of continued problems with his surgically repaired back. If you remove Bradley's field goals, the Celtics shot an abysmal 39.3% with their season on the line.

"We're definitely disappointed. I feel like if we weren't, there would be a problem", he said.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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