Despite averaging a near triple-double through the first two games of the NBA Finals—both losses—LeBron James knows he must play even better in a do-or-die Game 3 tonight against the Golden State Warriors.
LeBron has called Game 3 "must win" and "do or die. … We can't afford to go down 3-0."
— Jason Lloyd (@JasonLloydABJ) June 7, 2016
The Cleveland Cavaliers were completely overmatched to start the series, but insist that they remain confident with a couple of games on their home floor coming up.
Only three teams in League history have won the Finals after trailing 2-0.
Per the NY Times:
“A couple of them were bad footwork,” James said Tuesday afternoon, adding: “Out of the seven (Game 2 turnovers) , I would say four of them I can clean up and stop those guys from getting out on the break and doing what they do best, and that’s filling the lanes and sharing the ball. I’ll be much better and much more sound.”
The Cavaliers, who are not exactly known for their depth in the first place, could be more short-handed than usual. Kevin Love was placed in the league’s concussion protocol after he was elbowed in the head in Game 2. On Tuesday, he met with medical personnel. His status for the game was unclear. […] “It’s going to be the next man up,” James said. “We’re down, 0-2, and we can’t afford to look and say, ‘Wow, Kev’s not playing. What are we going to do?’ It’s next man up, because it’s a must-win for us.”
James has tried to operate as a facilitator for the Cavaliers. In the first two games, he averaged 21 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists while shooting 42.1 percent from the field. The question is whether he will opt to be even more assertive in Game 3, especially if Love is absent or limited. […] “I try to do whatever it takes to help our team win,” James said, adding: “My game doesn’t waver one way or the other. I’m not a pure scorer. I’m not an all-assist guy. I’m not just a rebounder. I do everything. So for me, I said after Game 2 that I’ve got to play better. But as far as my numbers, I don’t worry about that.”