There were questions at times in the series where James ranked relative to Kevin Durant, who was named the unanimous Finals MVP after finishing off the Cavs with a 39-point, seven-rebound, five-assist performance in the clincher.
Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) reacts toward referee Dan Crawford (43) as Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) looks on during the first half of Game 5 of basketball's NBA Finals in Oakland, Calif., Monday, June 12, 2017.
In their third consecutive NBA Finals meeting in three years, Golden State Warriors won the first year in six games, the second year losing dramatically in the seventh game and now in five games. In the second 12-minute period, the Warriors quickly put visitors on the spot - Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry organized a solid spurt and went into halftime with a double-digit advantage.
LeBron James scored 41 points to lead the Cavaliers.
Completing a flawless 9-0 run at home during the postseason, the Warriors became the first San Francisco Bay Area team to win a championship at home since the Oakland Athletics won the 1974 World Series.
"I'm happy for him", Curry said.
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In the end, Cleveland star LeBron James gives his Golden State counterpart Stephen Curry a congratulatory hug. Throughout the playoffs coach Steve Kerr encouraged his team to enjoy the ride, to "play with joy".
A 129-120 loss to Golden State in Game 5 of The Finals became the last blow.
That Magic series was the last time James' teams did not win at least one road game in a series. Durant only scored five points during the surge, but his presence drew so much attention from the Cavaliers defense that open shots were created for his teammates.
The Warriors started the game lackluster and trailed at the end of the first quarter.
Having added Durant last off-season to the talents of Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green among others, it was perhaps hardly surprising they should sweep all before them. Their run was better than anything Bill Russell or Larry Bird did in Boston, so they should be able to claim a spot on the list of the NBA's best teams ever. "I left everything out on the floor every single game for five games in this Finals, and you come up short".
Golden State took the best-of-seven series 4-1, reclaiming the throne they lost to the Cavaliers a year ago. "I thought they gave everything they had, and we fought, we competed, and we never gave in, but they beat us".
During the regular season, Durant averaged 25.1 points per game and set a career high with 8.3 rebounds per contest.
But he offered a glimpse of what more he could offer by averaging more than 30 points per game during a 4-1 series win over the Cavaliers in the Finals. Getting here isn't enough, especially once you've been here already multiple times.
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