NBA Finals -- Eight-point underdogs in Game 5, Cavs continue uphill climb

Just like the 2016 NBA Finals the Cavaliers enter Game 5 down 3 game to 1, but unlike last season the Cavs actually enter this game with momentum.

Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue said the defending champions were "too nice" at the start of the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors. Got to be physical.

The player I just described sounds like someone who could carry a team to respectable level even without James, right? I don't see anything amusing or anything to smile about.

For all the talk about James bolting West if the Cavaliers run into the Warriors' buzzsaw too many times, we seem to overlook the idea that Irving is an absolutely ideal sidekick to LeBron.

Expect the battle to be joined as the Warriors, on the brink of an National Basketball Association title but coming off their first loss in two months, try to clinch before home supporters. Not me. Talk all you want but I'm definitely going to bark back. We're healthy, we got Kevin Durant.

The Warriors could have finished the job - the job of winning a championship, not the chase for historical superiority that seems to arouse us intellectually a lot more than it does them. "We know what we have to do".

Kyrie Irving knocked down seven of Cleveland's 24 3-pointers - one of their three Finals scoring records - and had 40 points as the Cavs stopped Golden State's 15-game postseason winning streak and lived to see another game. And Cleveland is trying to become the first National Basketball Association team, out of 126, to rally from a postseason 0-3 hole.

This team has no shortage of talent, with a good mixture of savvy veterans off the bench.

On this segment of Bay Area Sports Insiders, our crew discusses the Warriors needing to establish ball movement through Curry, how he can get involved in finishing plays, whether its reasonable to use him as a decoy and what Golden State expects from its superstar as it tries to end the NBA Finals in five games. Pick any cliché you heard regurgitated time and time again over the years and it fits for the Cavaliers for Monday's Game 5. And if they move the ball, they'll get the other defenders moving and eventually find an open shot, often from beyond the arc.

Needless to say, Green was not afraid to call out the referees and overall game officiating that got out of hand.

"We're human beings, and all of us, when things are going well, there's a certain kind of erosion (in focus)". Previous year he was banged up throughout the playoffs after suffering ankle and medial collateral ligament sprains during Golden State's first-round series against the Houston Rockets, missing six full games and parts of two others.

The team that sets the tone physically has won every game in this series, with perhaps the exception of Game 3. I'm more of a 5-on-5 guy.

Normally, the team cruising to a 137-116 win wouldn't sit as nearly double-digit favorites.

The U.S. has never won a men's gold medal while playing in the 3-on-3 World Cup, which began in 2012. "So I went over the edge before - fool me once, you can't fool me twice".

"When you have home court ideally you take care of business at home and get a split on the road".

"You remember what can be, what can happen". We have a zero-three (Cavs at 0-3 in the Finals) team that is being.criticized-'Is LeBron past his peak?' It's just ludicrous stuff. Curry had his first poor game of these finals as he only put up 14 points on 30% shooting.

"We just want to play a good game".

"It's part of the game", Irving said.