With another Game Seven victory at stake, LeBron James would not miss. He would not sit out. And he would not be denied an eighth straight trip to the NBA Finals.
The four-time league MVP scored 35 points with 15 rebounds and nine assists on Sunday night, leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to an 87-79 win over the Celtics and eliminating Boston from the Eastern Conference finals in the decisive seventh game.
In the first close game of the series – and the lowest-scoring – James played all 48 minutes and had 12 of his points in the fourth quarter for his sixth straight Game Seven win.
What has been touted as a duel between Superstar LeBron James and Celtics coach Brad Stevens, who managed to squeeze out the most value out of a squad ravaged by injuries, the Celtics-Cavaliers Eastern Conference Finals series will go down in history as one of the most memorable.
The Celtics surged to a 2-0 start and were historically undefeated in post-season series when they had such an advantage. However, LeBron James is the kind of player who reshapes, even defines basketball history. The player who is often in the conversation of “Greatest of All Time,” carried his team on his shoulders throughout this tough series. Game 7 was no exception and when they needed it the most. James, who iso-played his way through the fourth quarter, play after play, to make sure that the Cavs protected their small lead.
For the eighth straight year, James’ team will represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals. But this may have been one of his more remarkable accomplishments.