Cavaliers dump Warriors to force Game Seven in NBA Finals

CLEVELAND,  (Reuters) – The Cleveland Cavaliers took another step in their historic comeback attempt with a 115-101 win over the Golden State Warriors yesterday to force a once-unthinkable decisive seventh game to the NBA Finals.

The Finals are all even at 3-3. LeBron James drops 41 (again) to lift the Cavs to their second straight win over the Warriors 115-101 and set up Game 7 on Sunday.
The Finals are all even at 3-3. LeBron James drops 41 (again) to lift the Cavs to their second straight win over the Warriors 115-101 and set up Game 7 on Sunday.

The LeBron James-led Cavaliers, one victory away from becoming the first team to win an NBA championship after falling behind 3-1 in the Finals, will now head to Oakland for Sunday’s deciding game riding a wave of momentum.

Cleveland used an explosive first half in which they led by as many as 22 points to set the tone and never allowed the usually sharp-shooting Warriors to settle into a rhythm or get any closer than seven points the rest of the way.

The Cavaliers built a 24-point lead in the third that looked like it might spell the end for the Warriors but the reigning champions finally closed out the quarter on a 10-0 run to pull within nine points.

But the Cavaliers, who got a game-high 41 points from James, managed to hang on for the win and keep alive their hopes at a maiden NBA championship.

Stephen Curry scored a team-high 30 points for the stunned Warriors but the two-time reigning league Most Valuable Player fouled out of the game late in the fourth quarter and then, in a rare display of frustration, threw his mouthguard into the stands to earn the first ejection of his career.

After falling behind 2-0 in the series, the Cavs were left for dead by many impartial observers who expected the top-seeded defending champion Warriors to run away with the series, some even calling for a four-game sweep.

But after splitting the next two games, the resurgent Cavs used a sparkling Game Five performance to shift momentum in their favour and, perhaps, place a seed of doubt in the minds of the Warriors.

The Cavaliers are now just the third team to force a Game Seven after falling behind 3-1, joining the 1951 New York Knicks and the 1966 Los Angeles Lakers.

With the win, the Cavaliers also kept alive their quest for a maiden NBA title that would be Cleveland’s first professional sports championship since the 1964 Cleveland Browns of the National Football League.

 

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