Why the Warriors will win the NBA Finals

'Threematch' at hand for Cavaliers and Warriors

We have seen LeBron up top, ball in hand, directing the screen and roll with hopes of drawing a big out to take advantage of their slow feet.

"Right now it's just time you have to block out everything".

Kyrie Irving, whose clutch shot broke an 89-89 tie in the winner-take-all game with Golden State, after practice on May 29 reflected on winning the championship previous year and facing the Warriors in the NBA Finals for a third straight time. That was a big reason he was named Finals MVP when the Warriors won the championship two years ago.

But last year's matchup was the pinnacle. The first two games of the Portland series, whatever happened, things got worse.

"You can't just sleepwalk through a season and sleepwalk through the playoffs and expect to be here; you got to do something". I'm taking part in practices, helping with the messaging, taking part in coaching meetings, but I'm not on the sidelines during games.

"For the most part, you know what LeBron (James) does, you know what Kyrie (Irving) does", Curry said, per CBS Sports' Kyle Boone. Channing Frye's also had his moments, including a five-3 game against the Raptors.

Irving has no time to reflect on what he's already done, no matter how unbelievable the accomplishment.

When the Cavs and Warriors tip off on Thursday, the level of familiarity will be easy to see. That was not the pinnacle of what these two great teams could do. Even with all those accolades already, the 25-year-old is playing his most efficient and arguably his best basketball of his NBA career right now, at just the right time leading into Cavs-Warriors III. That now just looks like preamble for this. What's the worst-case scenario of these Finals?

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Maybe, just maybe, the Warriors are slightly ahead due mainly to the addition of Kevin Durant, the former Thunder with a thunderous amount of baskets in nearly every game that he's fielded in. This would still be unbelievable.

The Warriors, as the favorites, have many paths to victory in this series. Few teams in history have ever come close to that.

During the regular season, there were 203 instances of a healthy player sitting out of a game, according to data compiled by instreetclothes.com, a website run by certified athletic trainer Jeff Stotts that has analyzed injuries for years.

Remember, Boston advanced to the Eastern Conference finals this season with one of the younger teams in the playoffs. Every other scenario is terrific. Kerr, who lead the team to a championship in 2015, won't coach the team during Thursday's Game 1 but hasn't ruled out the possibility of returning for the remainder of the best-of-seven series.

The series goes six games, allowing us another trip back to Cleveland, where the Cavs are either trying to win a series at home or make one last stand to defend their title at home? Does LeBron James need a win to cement his status as the best of all time?

The Warriors are using Durant the way he envisioned, but Lue has noticed changes in the All-Star. And Magic, because he does a great job getting everybody else involved.

"I'd like to tell you I'm ready", Kerr said, addressing reporters after Monday's practice here at the team's facility because his interim coach, Mike Brown, was out with the flu. Richard missed the series because of a suspension for slashing Boston's Hal Laycoe in the head and punching linesman Cliff Thompson. Every scenario feels more vital, richer, more textured than what came before. This is the pinnacle.



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