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LeBron James Speaks About Possibly Meeting Warriors in Finals for Third Straight Year
- Updated: December 1, 2016
Even with members of the media and many fans already picking the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors to meet for the third consecutive year in the NBA Finals, LeBron James has no interest in contemplating that prospect.
James was asked about the idea after the team’s Thursday shootaround in the wake of teammate Iman Shumpert’s explosive comments in a magazine interview. Shumpert had emphatically stated that the Cavaliers will again defeat the Warriors, with James taking a more measured approach by taking nothing for granted.
“I have zero entitlement on this journey,” James said. “It’s always a process for me. The Warriors are a great team. They assembled great players in Draymond (Green) and Klay (Thompson) and Steph (Curry) and KD (Kevin Durant) and the rest of those guys, and obviously they have a great coach in Steve Kerr, but it would be foolish of me and disrespectful to myself, to my teammates and to the rest of the competition to just put ourselves in a third matchup with them. And I haven’t even fantasized about it. I haven’t thought about it. It’s too long of a season. “
Green had actually instigated the war of words by stating that he wanted to “annihilate” the Cavs when they face each other. However, James says he doesn’t want to waste time looking so far into the future.
“It’s too much work to be done for me to put myself in that mind frame. But they’re a great team,” James said. “We’re a team that wants to get better every day and become a great team as well. So, we’ll see what happens. But I haven’t even thought about it at all.”
The first meeting between the Cavs and Warriors will take place on Christmas Day in Cleveland, with the rematch being played in Oakland on Jan. 16. Entering Thursday night’s action, both teams have the top record within their respective conferences.
Another Finals matchup between the Cavaliers and Warriors would be a first in NBA history: no two teams have ever faced each other in the Finals in three consecutive years.