The Cleveland Cavaliers have practically plowed through the competition in the Eastern Conference, going 12-2 during the Eastern Conference playoffs. This is in spite of losing Kevin Love in Game 4 of the first round to a shoulder injury and in spite of Kyrie Irving battling knee tendinitis. So now they face a Golden State team that has Stephen Curry on their team, the same Stephen Curry who shattered the NBA record for most 3-pointers made during a season (286). So the question is: Can LeBron and crew defeat the Warriors?
Well, the good thing for the Cavs is that the Warriors are a bit banged up themselves. Stephen Curry suffered a head contusion on a hard fall in the Warriors-Rockets series and Klay Thompson suffered a concussion in that same series. Another good thing for the Cavaliers is that having an extra week off means that they can get more rest for their guys, more specifically Irving and LeBron. But this could actually work against them as well, the Warriors could use some of that rest. One other bright spot for Cleveland has been J.R. Smith; the shooting guard has averaged 4.9 rpg and 13.5 ppg this postseason in spite of karate-chopping Jae Crowder in the head during the Cleveland-Boston series.
When asked on how to stop Steph Curry, LeBron simply said this: "You can't." So what Cleveland needs to do is not worry about Curry, but rather the rest of the team. Taking away his other options like Draymond Green and Klay Thompson will be the key for the Cavs to shock the world. But there is one problem: how do they get rebounds? Someone will have to step up if Cleveland wants to grab boards against the Warriors; Andrew Bogut has done an efficient job pulling down rebounds for the Warriors this season, averaging 8.1 rpg. With Kevin Love being out for Cleveland, this task gets a little bit harder to accomplish.
Is it possible for Cleveland to win the NBA Finals? Yes it is. Anything is possible, especially if you have LeBron on your team. But Cleveland will have to use their entire arsenal in order to defeat Golden State. This will still be a fun series to watch, though.