James recruited Jamal Crawford last summer to come to Cleveland, but instead they ignored him and signed rookie Cedi Osman. James told the Cavs not to trade Irving regardless of how disgruntled he appeared. Irving was under team control for two more years, and James was adamant he had no leverage. “Bring him to camp,” James told the Cavs. He was confident he could repair whatever damage Irving felt was done to their relationship. But Irving made clear to Gilbert and the Cavaliers he wanted out of Cleveland because he did not want to play another minute with James, one source told The Athletic. Given how close Irving and James were to the ends of their contracts, the Cavs chose to move Irving while they believed he still had peak value.
May 21, 2018 | 4:02 pm EDT Update
Anthony Slater: Steve Kerr on Draymond Green’s Game 3 technical: “I thought it was unfair.” Said they’ll reach out to the league in hopes it’ll get rescinded.
Logan Murdock: James Harden on the Rockets’ confidence level going into Game 4: “We might get whooped by 40, we might lose by two. We might win by 20 but our same swagger, our same confidence is always there.”
That’s why for him, the connectivity between tonight’s game and Boston’s ultimate goal – winning a championship – are intertwined in such a way that you can’t realistically look at one without acknowledgement of the other, which is why he’s operating on a level of focus unlike any prior to this point in his basketball career. “We’re two games away from going to the NBA Finals,” Brown told NBC Sports Boston. “And six [wins] away from doing something special. We’re too close and we came too far to not be focused.”