Arena Sportsnet

East Finals – Game 7 Preview

The late, great, legendary Dave Niehaus said it best: MY! OH MY!

We have a seventh in the Eastern Conference Finals and it’s gonna be an absolute DOOZY!

Three wins for the young upstart Celtics – Three for the defending Eastern Conference Champion and experienced Cleveland Cavaliers.

The difference: This Game 7 is in Boston – a house of horrors for ANY team – no matter what the building.

Whether it is the venerable Boston Garden or the new TD Garden, it’s just something about Boston and Game 7 that seem synonymous with the word EPIC.

Wanna know what makes this sooooo intriguing – the home court advantage.

Scoring wise, this series has not been even close. Except for one game this series, every game has been decided by double-digits. And each of the first six games has been won by the home team.

My prediction was the first team to score a road win would win the series. Until now, no team has scored a road win.

This is the first Game 7 in the conference finals since 2013 – also involving LeBron James as a member of the Miami Heat – and he won that game.

The Key Factors are these:

For the Boston Celtics:
KEEP THE CROWD IN THE GAME! As long as the TD Garden is rocking, the Celtics will be rolling. In the three earlier games in the Conference Final in Beantown, even when the C’s were facing a deficit, it just took one play for the crowd to start yelling and the C’s to start excelling. Jaylin Brown, Jason Tatum, Terry Rozier, and the venerable Al Horford feed off the crowd’s energy. Not to mention their defense. They are on the plus side of the turnover ratio at home.

For the Cleveland Cavaliers:
LeBron, LeBron, and MORE LeBron. For the Cavaliers to even have a REMOTE shot in this game, LeBron has to have the game of his life. He must even outplay his Game 7 in the NBA World Championship Series two years ago. How is that possible you ask, he has to have more than a chasedown block, he must play the game in ALL areas and not allow the crowd to fatigue him. He also has to shoulder more of the load now minus Kevin Love who is out with a concussion.

Advantage: Celtics – simply because they are at home.

And they have made this miraculous run WITHOUT their two main free-agent pieces.

Prediction: This will be the closest game of the series, but the Leprechaun Legion will prevail 110-106.

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