They have to be exhausted, and that's no way to go into a series against Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and the Warriors, who blew Cleveland away in five games past year, or James Harden and a Rockets team that can be every bit as potent on one end and lock teams down on the other. Remaining haters can soothe themselves with the probability that the Cavaliers will fall short for the third time in four years, and James's finals ledger will soon read 3 rings in 9 tries, as opposed to Michael Jordan's flawless 6-0.
James sought out Tatum on the floor at TD Garden after the Cleveland Cavaliers' 87-79 Game 7 triumph on Sunday night, then James showered Boston's 20-year-old forward with praise at his postgame news conference.
"I hate when people say that", Curry said.
"It was asked of me tonight to play the whole game", he said.
And with the postseason coming down to crunch time, we get to see big time players produce in big time spots.
James, playing in his 100th match of the season, logged in a full 48 minutes.
"The postseason has been a lot of fun, from the first game to today".
"It's wonderful", James said. We did it for most of the year and in the playoffs, we took it to another level.
In 2010 as a free agent, James' rocky relationship with Gilbert helped push him to Miami.
The Cavaliers are expected to be underdogs against either.
While James' amusement park analogy may not have hit home in the Northeast, it wasn't hard to figure out what the 4-time MVP meant. "Didn't know if we were going to make trades or not". I'm the wrong guy to ask.
Speaking after the heartbreaking loss, head coach Brad Stevens hailed the fight put up by his young Celtics side who were without star men Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving for their remarkable playoff run. "That first quarter we did a really good job of communicating, limiting them on threes, just contesting everything, making everything hard".
This might be his weakest supporting cast.
Jeff Green had 19 points and eight rebounds, JR Smith scored 12 points and Tristan Thompson had 10 points and nine boards for the Cavaliers.
Lue recruited Green to the Cavs last summer, and the team signed him to the veteran's minimum (one year, $2.3 million).
Even with James accounting for so much of the offense, and the media constantly bashing on the Cavaliers role players, James went out of his way after Game 7 to defend them.