The Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t reached the NBA Finals yet, but they’re already heavy Las Vegas underdogs against the Golden State Warriors.
Fred McLeod isn’t surprised.
“It’s been that way from the 73-win season a year ago,” the Cavaliers play-by-play voice said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “They’re a great, great team. Assuming (the Cavs) get there, they couldn’t care less if they’re the favorites or not. In fact, it’s probably even better for the Cavs that they wouldn’t be. It would be classic matchup for sure (with) so many incredible match-ups from LeBron against Durant and Kyrie against Steph Curry and Love and Draymond Green and J.R. against Klay Thompson – it goes on and on. You got to get there frst, but I think the entire sports world – not just the basketball world, but the entire sports world – would tune in for this trilogy. It’s happened once, I think, in hockey, twice in baseball, once in the NFL going back to the ’50s, and never in the NBA where two teams have met three years in a row for a championship. But you got to get their first, so let’s make sure the Cavs take care of business. But if they do, we’ll all be salivating.”
The Cavs lead the Celtics 2-1 in the Eastern Conference Finals. They lost Game 3, 111-108, on Sunday – their first loss of the postseason – as LeBron James scored just 11 points on 4-of-13 shooting.
“He’s human,” McLeod said. “He is. When Tiger Woods was going through his stretch of domination and he shot 76, did the whole world go, ‘Oh my God, what’s wrong with Tiger Woods?’ It happens – even to greatness. He’s had 210 career playoff games now, and nearly 90 percent of them have been 20 points or better – so he’s been incredibly consistent. He had a clunker, and he knows it. I haven’t done the math on what he’s done after subpar performances in the postseason, but I’ll bet it’s close to 30 a game and I suspect he’ll bounce back big-time (Tuesday) night.”