Eric Uribe | Mon 12/06/2017 - 03:28 EDT

Pressure is on Warriors to close out in Game 5

Pressure is on Warriors to close out in Game 5
One year later, we're right back where we started: 3-1. Does Cleveland have another historic comeback in them? Or is Durant the difference maker to exercise the old demons? Take a look at our Game 5 preview.

Cleveland to keep it close in Game 5

Odds courtesy of BetOnline.

lines

Over/under 230.5 points: Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State Warriors (-8.5)

With Golden State ahead 3-1 and the series going back to Oakland for Game 5, we can't help but see the similarities with last year's historic collapse. I know, Kevin Durant wasn't around then, but hear us out.

Once again, all the pressure is on the Warriors. Considering no team has ever mounted a 3-0 comeback in the playoffs, there's almost zero stress on Cleveland. But the Dubs? You have to think those demons from a year ago are slowly creeping back.

And reminiscent of last season, Draymond Green has lost his cool again. He won't be suspended this time around, but was almost ejected on Friday with a pair of technicals (one was weirdly called back). 

But it gets more bizarre. For the second time in a row, a family member of a Warriors player is crying conspiracy. Green's mom, like Ayesha Curry last season, accused the refs of rigging the outcome via Twitter.

You can't make this stuff up.

It might be up to Kyrie Irving to make deja vu happen. He, more than anyone, sparked last year's rally and Irving is currently playing at that level, if not better. Irving followed a 38-point effort in Game 3 with a 40 points off 15-of-27 shooting — including 5-of-7 from three-point range — in Game 4. Something about big moments seems to bring out the best in Irving, and it doesn't get bigger than an elimination game.

Aside from a big night from Irving, the Cavs set the record books ablaze in their 137-116 Game 4 victory. They came out firing with 49 points in the opening quarter before finishing with 86 points at the half — both NBA records.

The offensive outburst was spurred by sizzling shooting from downtown. Cleveland knocked down 24-of-45 (53.3 percent) from beyond the arc. That set an NBA high in Finals history and just one shy of the all-time NBA record.

But that's the problem. You can't really expect the Cavaliers to replicate an all-time performance like that on Monday — or even come close.

Golden State has proven there's no stopping their high-octane attack. This series, they are averaging an eye-popping 119.8 points per game.

jawing

Durant is the difference maker, as he's one win away from locking up the NBA Finals MVP nod. He finished Game 4 with 35 points and is now averaging 34.3 points through four games. Durant and his signature go-ahead shot in Game 3 is the reason this series isn't deadlocked at 2-2 and he's going to finish off the Cavs on Monday.

But that doesn't mean the Cavs won't go down swinging. Both Irving and Kevin Love are balling at the moment, all the while LeBron James is currently averaging a triple-double this series. The Big Three will keep it close, but in the end, the Dubs will be popping champagne and hoisting an NBA Finals trophy.

Pick: Cleveland (+8.5)

Total: Under

Results / FixturesCleveland Cavaliers

Category : Sports Betting News

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