Down 0-3 against the powerhouse Golden State Warriors, the Cleveland Cavaliers set NBA Finals records of most points scored in any quarter (49 in the first) and most 3s made (24) to seize Game 4, 137-116, on Friday night at the Quicken Loans Arena.
James said after the game that the Cavs have championship DNA as well, and that they showed it Friday night.
Game 5 will be Monday, June 12, as the Cavs aim to become the first team in National Basketball Association history to come back from a 0-3 deficit in the playoffs.
(Ronald Martinez/Pool Photo via AP).
Kevin Durant had 35 points, but no other Warrior had more than 20 points for the game. Cleveland fans chanted as they walked toward the exits. Call them names. Write them off.
But the Cavaliers enjoyed the flawless storm past year. The Warriors' energy, focus and intensity has to come soon or else it's finger-nail biting time for Golden State fans.
Game five is back in Oakland on Monday.
But it seems like an even more improbable task than it did past year.
Now, Cleveland is back in familiar territory trailing 3-1 heading into Game 5 on Monday and some new questions can emerged.
It's risky, and not for the faint of heart.
LeBron James threw an alley-oop off the backboard to himself and finished with 31 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists. "It causes too much stress, man".
"I don't think about years from now".
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website. Cleveland hit a Finals-record 24 three-pointers and attempted 45 shots from beyond the arc.
"We made shots", Lue said in an understatement.
There's a big streak on the line for Golden State, and it's not just the 15-game winning streak in this postseason. "We feel like that should be part of the game". "We're a tough, resilient team".
But beyond their resiliency, the Cavs have displayed a mental toughness through all kinds of adversity.
The Warriors not shooting well from the field coupled with the Cavs' inability to miss from three was not the only glaring problem.
The Cleveland Cavaliers staved off NBA Finals elimination and ended Golden State's shot at an unprecedented ideal run through the playoffs with a gritty 137-116 win over the Warriors on Friday.
And beyond their firepower, the Cavs did it on defense, holding the up-and-down Warriors without a single fast-break point.
Do you remember when Steve Young won his first National Football League championship and asked someone to please lift the monkey off of his back?
The Cavs still face a historical uphill climb, but they finally dispensed with the pleasantries in Game 4. "We're ready to live in it". As good as they looked tonight, Game 5 takes the teams back to Golden State where the Cavs have already lost twice by double digits.
The Cavs great shooting would carry over from the first half and with it came some aggressive play that would prove how intense this rivalry has become.
Only this time Irving and James had Love and to a lesser degree J.R. Smith along for the ride. "But we knew what we were faced with". Every team in the world looks better when it's making shots; Cleveland wasn't in the first three games of this series, and set nets ablaze on the brink of getting swept. "If I felt better, I was going to do it".
The bottom line is that Cleveland has gotten these Finals to 3-1, a familiar situation that must give them a little comfort. Many Warriors went through all the stages of grief in this loss - although some seem to be stuck in a mix of anger and acceptance.
"We've got to be way better", Durant said.
The fifth game will now be played in California. "So our mindset is try to go up there and get one".