OAKLAND, Calif., Sporting Alert — Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors takes place on Thursday night at ORACLE Arena.
Live coverage of the much-anticipated championship series will be on ABC, starting at 9:00 pm ET, while Watch ABC will provide live stream of the game as well.
The clash will be a rematch of the last two NBA Finals with the teams splitting the most recent title-chasing series 1-1.
This is also the first time the same two teams will feature in three successive NBA Finals.
Both teams have reloaded for this season with Golden State most notably adding the free-scoring Kevin Durant from Oklahoma City during the offseason.
Defending champions Cavaliers have also added to their roster to provide lots of options on both offense and defense.
After sweeping their way into the NBA Finals, following series wins over Portland, Utah and San Antonio, the Warriors enter this battle aiming to avenge the disappointment of last season when they let a 3-1 lead slipped.
Cleveland was also impressive in the early rounds of the playoffs this term, winning all but one game in the postseason, which they used as motivation.
Entering Thursday night’s tip-off, ESPN’s Basketball Power Index gives the Warriors a big advantage over the Cavs.
According to ESPN Stats and Information, Golden State has an 84 percent chance to win in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, which will feature a combined 47 All-Star appearances from 11 players, including seven All-Stars from 2017.
ESPN Stats and Information also revealed that this year’s NBA Finals will see the teams enter with the fewest postseason losses since the current playoff format started.
LeBron James will be playing in his seventh consecutive NBA Finals and he will be hoping to team up with the likes of Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson and Co. to win his fourth world championship.
However, the likes of Durant, Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green have already shown what they are capable of doing, making this finals rematch something very special.
In their previous two meetings in the regular season this term, James averaged 25.5 points with 10.5 rebounds and shot 45-percent in the 1-1 series.
Durant averaged 28.5 points and 10.5 rebounds for the Warriors during the series, while shooting 51.3-percent.