Report: LeBron James ‘still’ believes Cavs could’ve won 2015 finals with healthy Kyrie Irving

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Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers had a chance to win its first NBA title in 2015.

Unfortunately, the team lost Kyrie Irving in the series opener of the NBA Finals to a knee injury. The point guard was ruled out for the rest of the series.

LeBron James tried to carry the team to the championship but a healthy Golden State Warriors squad proved to be too much for the Cavs who were already missing Kevin Love. James and his teammates reportedly believe that had Irving been healthy, the Cavs would have won the title.

“Irving doesn’t need any lectures about how fragile playoff runs are,” wrote Brian Windhorst of ESPN. “In 2015, he broke his kneecap in Game 1 of the NBA Finals in a series his Cleveland Cavaliers lost in six games, a series LeBron James and his teammates still believe they could’ve won with a healthy Irving. The next season, of course, Irving averaged 27 points in the Finals and hit one of the biggest shots of the past 25 years to turn the tables on the Golden State Warriors.”

The seven-time All-Star is currently nursing an injury again as he tries to help the Brooklyn Nets’ title run in this year’s playoffs. He suffered the ankle injury in his team’s Game 4 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday.

Though the extent of the injury is still unknown, the amount of pain Irving was in immediately following the fall seems to indicate that he could be out for quite some time.

Surely, James and all of Irving’s former Cavs teammates will be rooting for a quick recovery.

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Orel is a freelance writer who is passionate about the NBA. He has followed the league since the late '90s and found increased interest in it in 2003 – when an 18-year-old prodigy from Akron, Ohio took the league by storm.