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The Chef vs. The King
It's that time of the year! Basketball Fanatics and Analysts have all agreed this will be one of the most anticipated finals in recent history. Stephen Curry and the Warriors have been on a tear all year that took the Basketball world by surprise, everyone excluding Warrior Fans. However, even being in a weaker Eastern Conference, Lebron and the Cavs have made it deeper than most had expected. The Best Player vs. The Best Team. Who do you Got?
For my in depth analysis, click "Read More"
What's my prediction? Warriors in 7.
And that's from a Lebron Fan.
The NBA, especially the Playoffs, are all about Matchups. Lets start with the Stars.
Lebron James: The Best Basketball Player in the World. Lebron has been to the NBA Finals for 5 consecutive years and has the experience of the Finals well under his belt and several accolades in his resume; however, Lebron in these playoffs has averaged 27.6 PPG, 10.4 RPG, and 8.3 APG but has been regarded as "underachieving" his usual dominance. This is one of the few times in his career, let alone recent history, of him being regarded as the UNDERDOG of a playoff series. Even when facing the Spurs last year, the Heat were regarded as a slight favorite for the Larry O'Brien Trophy. Facts be stated: Lebron will get his. He will indefinitely score and score efficiently. The Warriors will throw Draymond Green, Andre Iguodola, Klay Thompson and others to give different looks and hopefully get him off his rhythm. Elevated to a new regard of greatness, been here before, and he's the King, I expect James to showcase his greatness and give the Warriors a ride unlike any they've had in the playoffs.
Stephen Curry: Chef Curry! This man has personally been one of my favorite players but even I, a Warriors fan, seen Curry elevate to a status in this league that wasn't anticipated. After these playoffs, where will Steph stand in the league? Possessing one of the purest pull ups and a shot off the dribble that has never been seen before in the NBA, he's a threat everywhere on the court. Averaging 29.2 PPG, 1.9 SPG, and 6.4 APG and shooting 43.7% from 3, this man is in another world. Also unguardable, able to get a shot off anywhere and must be picked up as SOON as he crosses half-court; I don't expect Kyrie to guard him straight up. I expect the Cavs to assign Dellavedova to be a pest to him and placing a defensive prowess that rests in Iman Shumpert on him. Even the King will have a go at him particularly late in games. I see Lebron virtually winning the matchup with the two stars by a small margin due to his size and capabilities of guarding Curry straight up versus Curry guarding Lebron-- which won't be seen often.
The stars ideally neutralizing each other, it comes down to the remaining cast. Due to Kyrie being injured during these playoffs, along with the absence of Kevin Love, I give the Warriors the advantage. Kyrie has 9 days to rest up and prepare for the biggest series of his NBA career. Hopefully this will give him the rest needed to ball out on the biggest stage of basketball. Klay Thompson has struggled in the Rockets series but can get hot on a moments notice. Recently suffered an injury in the close out game against Houston, this break isn't only beneficial for the Cavs. I expect him to elevate his play and the Splash Brothers be on full display. The matchup I'm interested most in is Draymond Green and Tristan Thompson. Both of these gentlemen have blossomed in these playoffs. I don't expect Tristan to get the numbers on the boards as he did in the Atlanta series but likewise with Draymond and his ability to distribute. I see these two men battling all series. Shumpert and J.R will give the 3 point shooting and energy needed for Cleveland to match up with the Depth of the Warriors. If these two can be consistent throughout this series, I don't see it as a dominating performance for the Warriors.
Overall, I see the Depth of the Warriors being the advantage against Cleveland; they literally go at least 9 deep. Cleveland has had an easier road to the Finals but doesn't discredit them of the hard work and effort put in. They practically limped to the Finals. Steve Kerr vs. David Blatt will be an interesting battle of Basketball Intelligence. These two teams are essentially equally matched but due to the depth, home court advantage, and momentum of the whole year, the Dubs are predicted to raise the banners on opening day next season. I personally believe it will come down to 7 games and whoever has the ball in the last few seconds of the game. I believe this series will be in the hands of the stars and whoever outperforms the other in the 4th quarter of each game. Though both were born and having roots in Akron, Ohio, Lebron and Curry have different intentions of where the Larry O'Brien trophy should rest for the 2015 NBA Season. Who do you have? What's your NBA Analysis? Comment Below.