Don’t count the King out just yet; 2-0 deficit nothing new

NBA Finals Preview

June 6, 2018

Kyle Terada - USA TODAY Sports

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LeBron James and the Cavaliers trail the 2018 NBA Finals two-games-to-none; that is the current scenario heading into Game Three of the best of seven series. Despite such astonishing performances from the King so far – 51 points in Game One and 29 points in Game Two – it just hasn’t been enough to overwhelm the Warriors.

Still, it is too early to count the Cavs and their leader out just yet. We’ve seen James in this situation before – 8 times (including the current scenario) to be specific. Three of which he was victorious.

Let’s go down memory lane…

The first venture was in 2006 during the Eastern semis when the Cavs lost to the Pistons in seven. Cleveland battled back winning three straight but dropped the final two of that series. This set-up happened twice in 2007 – Eastern finals and the NBA Finals. A similar story happened in 2008 during the Eastern semis where the Cavs lost to the Celtics in seven. That was during the era of the Boston three – Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett. It was in 2016 we witnessed one of James’s greatest victories during the NBA Finals. The Cavs were down 2-0, but won Game Three at home. Cleveland dropped Game Four, but eventually beat the Warriors in seven to bring the city its first major sports title in over 50 years. Last year in 2017, Kevin Durant was added to the Warriors picture. Durant helped the team to a title in just five games. It was Golden States ultimate response to their 3-1 Finals collapse the year prior. Now we are here – 2018! The Cavs just defeated the Celtics in seven during the Eastern finals. Performances fluctuated during the series. However, persistence and resilience are what lead the Cavs to overcome a team full of young guns.

Kyle Terada - USA TODAY Sports

Back against the wall? Limits being tested?

Possibly... But one thing for certain, losing is no longer an option for the Cavaliers. Two things for sure, Bron Bron feels the same way.

Does this 2-0 deficit in the 2018 NBA Finals feel different?

“It feels like we’re down 2-0,” says James who addressed the media prior to Wednesday’s game three. “I don’t like the way I feel. I don’t like the mood that I’m in right now…I personally don’t feel good today (Tuesday) of the deficit that we have. Not about tomorrow (Wednesday) – I feel great about our opportunity.”

Game Three moves to Cleveland Wednesday night. The Cavaliers have won eight straight at home since losing Game One in the first round to the Pacers. James credits the fans for providing a level of comfort suitable for role players to dominate on their home floor.

If Cleveland is not successful in Game Three at Quicken Loans Arena – game four will be an even taller task. No team has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit to win a playoff series.

Game Four is also in Cleveland on Friday.