Sports Spectrum Magazine Summer 2021

NBA Finals Predictions: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Golden State Warriors

It’s deja vu all over again (and again, and again, and again). For the fourth straight year, the NBA Finals will feature the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors beat the Cavaliers in five games last year to move to 2-1 in the three series together.

Cleveland goes into these Finals as the underdog. It will rely on the exploits of LeBron James, who is looking to win his fourth championship. James is averaging 34.0 points, 9.2 rebounds and 8.8 assists in the 2018 playoffs.

On the opposite end, the Golden State Warriors are four wins away from becoming the first NBA team since the Los Angeles Lakers (1985-88) to win three championships in four seasons.

So who will take home the Larry O’Brien Trophy? Our picks below:

Jason Romano: Golden State in 7On paper, the Warriors should win this in four or five games. But you can see that this Golden State team might not be as strong as it has been in the past. And the best player on the floor plays for Cleveland. The Warriors will get their second straight title, but it’ll be harder than people think.

MVP: Stephen Curry

Justin Adams: Golden State in 6 — This series reminds me of the first time these two played in 2015. Questions of Kevin Love’s health will be present as he’s trying to come back from a concussion. This places more weight on LeBron James’ shoulders and I see him stealing Game 2 and winning Game 3. But the series will come to a quick close as Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and company will reel off three wins in a row to capture their third championship in four years.

MVP: Kevin Durant

Jon Ackerman: Cleveland in 7 — People say this is the weakest LeBron James team in years (the Cavs were the No. 4 seed in the East). They say he has no help. They say he’s too old and playing too many minutes. Yet, here he is again. The Warriors have the better team, but do they have anyone who can guard James?

MVP: LeBron James

NBA Finals Schedule: (All times Eastern Standard Time)

Game 1 from Oakland: May 31, 9 p.m., ABC

Game 2 from Oakland: June 3, 8 p.m., ABC

Game 3 from Cleveland: June 6, 9 p.m., ABC

Game 4 from Cleveland: June 8, 9 p.m., ABC

Game 5* from Oakland: June 11, 9 p.m., ABC

Game 6* from Cleveland: June 14, 9 p.m., ABC

Game 7* from Oakland: June 17, 8 p.m., ABC

* if necessary

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