Kobe Bryant said it seems like LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers “want it a lot more” in the NBA Finals.
The Cavaliers took a 2–1 lead in its series with the Golden State Warriors after a 96–91 Game 3 win. Cleveland has dealt with a rash of injuries throughout the postseason, including to starters Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.
Speaking as a guest analyst for Sina Sports, Bryant said the Warriors “should win” the series, but “they can't play tentatively.”
“They can't play scared,” said Bryant. “You gotta play, you gotta step up and meet the challenge. And right now, Cleveland and LeBron [James], it seems like they want it a lot more. It seems like the game and this championship means a lot more to them. So if you're Golden State, you really have to look in the mirror and ask yourself if you step up to this challenge.”
James has averaged 41 points through the first three games, setting an NBA Finals record with 123 total points in that period.
Golden State is led by this season's MVP, Stephen Curry, who has averaged 24 points through the first three games.
Game 4 is onThursday night in Cleveland.
- Molly Geary