Cavs' James 'confident' ahead of do-or-die Game Six

Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:17pm EDT
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By Rory Carroll

OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) - The Cleveland Cavaliers are undermanned, exhausted and facing an elimination game in the NBA Finals but LeBron James still likes his team's chances of winning the championship series.

Following Sunday's 104-91 loss in Oakland that put the top-seeded Golden State Warriors ahead 3-2 in the best-of-seven series, a self-assured James explained why he remains confident in his team's chances.

"I feel confident because I'm the best player in the world," James, who led all players with 40 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists in the loss, told reporters. "It's that simple."

Few could dispute James's self-assessment after another spectacular performance, where he posted his second triple-double of the series.

But it wasn't enough to overcome a sensational performance by league MVP Stephen Curry, who scored 17 of his 37 points in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach and the Warriors one win away from their first title in 40 years.

"I thought he was great," James said after the game. "But that's not why we lost. We gave up 18 fast break points. We gave up 15 second-chance points. Steph was special, obviously, but his hitting those step back threes is not why we lost the game."

James said he would have to play better for his team to win, but it is his supporting cast that needs to improve to keep the Warriors from hoisting the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy on the Cavaliers home floor on Tuesday.

Cleveland guard Matthew Dellavedova, who had a breakout performance in Game Three filling in for the injured Kyrie Irving, scored just five points in 41 minutes of play and was unable to contain Curry down the stretch.   Continued...

Jun 14, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) shoots the ball against Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) and guard Andre Iguodala (9) in game five of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. John G. Mabanglo-Pool Photo via USA TODAY Sports