Jun 16, 2016

    Cavs can rewrite NBA history, force game 7


    IT COULD take another historic effort from Kyrie Irving and LeBron James to keep Cleveland in the NBA Finals while the Golden State Warriors face the possible loss of centre Andrew Bogut.

    The defending champions Warriors lead the best-of-seven series 3-2 entering Game 6 tonight at Cleveland, with the Cavaliers needing a victory to force a seventh game on Sunday in California.

    James and Irving each scored 41 points to spark Cleveland past Golden State 112-97 on Monday to avoid elimination, becoming the first teammates in NBA Finals history to reach 40 points in the same game.

    "We'll be very well prepared for Game 6," Irving said.

    "That's the only thing that's on our mind right now. We're not satisfied. We understand the magnitude of what Game 6 means for us and we know that it will be an incredible level they are going to play at, and we have to play at an even better level."

    Golden State were awaiting final results of an MRI exam on Bogut, who suffered a left knee injury early in the third quarter on Monday, to know his status for the remainder of the series.

    Bogut blocked six shots in Game 2, the most in a finals game since Pau Gasol in 2010, and averages 3.2 points and three rebounds in the finals.

    The Australian's absence would partly be offset by the return of forward Draymond Green from a one-game suspension for accumulated flagrant fouls but still require Golden State to dig deeper into the bench for help.

    No team have won the NBA Finals after trailing 3-1 and only two of 33 such teams, the 1951 New York Knicks and 1966 Los Angeles Lakers, even managed to force a game seven.