James says Jordan chase is about motivation, not greatness

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The 32-year-old, who is seeking a fourth National Basketball Association title, took 212 post-season games to surpass Jordan, a six-time champion who played 179 playoff games.

"It's just a personal goal of mine", James said Thursday before Cavs shootaround in preparation of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics.

In their 123-98 beating of the Hawks in Game 2 of that second-round series, Cleveland scored those 74 points in the first half.

He did it with a three-pointer late in the third quarter - the first of a string of three straight from beyond the arc.

- Bradley posted a team-high 23 points in Game 5, marking his eighth career playoff game with at least 20 points.

It was a very welcomed sight in Irving's case, after he rolled his left ankle in the third quarter of Cleveland's Game 4 win.

It was a muted celebration in a road game, with the James three-pointer putting the defending National Basketball Association champion Cavs up by 32 points.

No matter what, you can not count James and his team out of any series, as we learned a year ago.

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"This is a big step for us, especially what we went through all season, and we were doubted throughout the regular season all year".

On the strength of 14 straight points from Irving, the Cavaliers came all the way back from a double-digit deficit early in the second half and took an 87-80 lead over the Celtics after the third quarter, and they never looked back. The next active player, Durant, is far behind James at 2,872 playoff points, although the Golden State forward is also four years younger. Improved to 36-5 against Eastern Conference opponents in the playoffs since 2015.

And with more than two minutes to play, the Cavaliers had a commanding 36-26 lead after a Kyrie Irving lay-up in which he was fouled by Rozier.

Game 1 between the Cavaliers and Warriors will be Thursday, June 1, in Golden State, at 9:00 PM EST.

LeBron James has topped a Michael Jordan record.

The Celtics did their best to keep up, but the consistent outside shooting, bench scoring and defense they relied on to stun Cleveland in Game 3 wasn't there Thursday night.

And that more than anything else, is clear and undeniable evidence that the Celtics are on the come-up even after their season ended with a 135-102 Game 5 drubbing. "I told our guys: 'We made a lot of great strides, but this pain is part of the path to what we ultimately want to be'".

But the Celtics, playing without injured superstar and team scoring leader Isaiah Thomas, stormed into Cleveland for Game Three and stunned a strangely lethargic Cleveland team, 111-108. But whether the Celtics take Fultz or the other candidate for the top spot, UCLA star Lonzo Ball, both prospects play Thomas's position: point guard.

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