The Golden State Warriors can win their second consecutive NBA championship with a victory in Game 5 against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals on Monday, June 13, 2016, at Oracle Arena in Oakland.
The Warriors, who will play without suspended forward Draymond Green, hold a 3-1 lead in the series. Green was suspended for giving LeBron James a shot in the groin, and both teams talked tough at Sunday’s shoot-arounds.
Here’s what you need to know:
Who: Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State Warriors
What: Game 5, NBA Finals (best of seven)
Where: Oracle Arena, Oakland, Califoria
Tipoff: 9 p.m. Eastern
Line: Warriors -5.5
(with post season scoring in parentheses)
Cavaliers: Irving (24.2), Smith (11.4), James (24.6), Love (16.2), Thompson (8.1)
Warriors: Curry (25.3), Thompson (24.1), Barnes (9.6), Green (15.0), Bogut (4.8)
Green and James might make up, get over this moment and become friends again one day.
It’s hard to envision that right now, given how these NBA Finals have become far less friendly by the day, more testy by the game, with Golden State’s Green smack in the middle of much of the action.
Suddenly, James and the Cleveland Cavaliers have their opening and perhaps a prime chance to get back into this best-of-seven series: with Green banned and outside the building altogether.
He will have to watch his Warriors try to close out a second straight championship with everybody else who can’t get into sold-out Oracle Arena on Monday night. Green was suspended Sunday for his dustup with James in the fourth quarter of Friday’s Game 4 win that drew a retroactive Flagrant-1 foul against Golden State’s emotional leader.
The NBA said Green “made unnecessary contact with a retaliatory swipe of his hand to the groin” of James, who was issued a retroactive technical for his role in the scuffle.
“I think we all know what’s crossing the line no matter if you’re playing basketball or if you’re playing video games or we’re playing catch or you’re double-dutching it,” James said.
“We know what words cross the line, male or female. And ever since Draymond came into the league, I’ve been someone that he can always talk to and things of that nature. But he crossed the line last game. He felt like I crossed the line. We said what we had to say.
“So we’re in a competitive series right now, and I think right now friendship is the last thing we’re thinking about.”
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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