Another NBA Finals brings another huge challenge for LeBron

Al Horford is double-teamed by the Cavs’ Le Bron James and Tristan Thompson as the Celtics were looking to reach the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010

Al Horford is double-teamed by the Cavs’ Le Bron James and Tristan Thompson as the Celtics were looking to reach the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010

Even as the springy Rozier launched at the basket in transition, James simply rose up and smothered the attempt late in the third quarter.

LeBron James liked what he got a look at in Game 6, and now we're going to a winner-take-all Game 7.

George Hill enjoyed his best game of the series for the Cavaliers with 20 points, while reserve Jeff Green chipped in 14 and Larry Nance hit for 10 points.

He departed the game with less than a minute remaining to a frenzied ovation.

"I think when you lose an All-Star like Kevin and our second go-to guy, pivotal part of what we try to do, and when he goes down and then you help your brother up, that's what they did", praised Coach Tyronn Lue. Cleveland finished with a 44-31 advantage in rebounding, including 15-5 on the offensive boards, and went 18-of-22 at the stripe.

Al Horford put up zero points on 0-for-4 from the field, but he did have four rebounds and three assists in the first half. "Right around the trade deadline, no matter if we made a trade or not at that point in time, I kind of just switched my mindset on saying, 'Let's get this most out of this season I can.' I'm determined to get the most". Looking like it might have to be a 48-minute game for LeBron, who has 12 points and 5 rebounds.

The first six games between Boston-Cleveland and Houston-Golden State were decided by an average of 24 points.

Although Boston remains unbeaten at home in the playoffs, the Celtics know they can't afford to be complacent against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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And he would not be denied an eighth straight trip to the NBA Finals. And the home team has won every game in this series. "Obviously, like I said the other night, I believe in every guy on the bench, whether they played the other night or not".

The Celtics actually got off to a strong start in the first quarter but a huge run by Cleveland in the second quarter gave them an 11-point lead heading into halftime, a cushion that the Cavaliers wouldn't relinquish.

"As these series go on it gets harder and harder to win games, and you have to play with great force at both ends of the court against really good teams", said the Celtics coach.

He's increased his scoring by six points per game while also cutting down on turnovers, and LeBron has reeled off six 40+ point games this postseason (the Cavs are 4-1 in those games).

Talks about the possibility of LeBron James leaving Cleveland in the summer in free agency could not have appeared further from his mind as he put on a sensational performance in front of his home crowd.

"Been fortunate enough to play some good basketball through my career", James said.

While Terry Rozier (28 points) and Jaylen Brown (27 points) can hold their heads high, the other Celtics' starters all had games to forget.

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