May 30, 2018
By: Jenna Kovalsky
Now I know what some of you are thinking… Cleveland and Golden State have made it to the finals again, YAWN. Take a shot of espresso and wake up! If you don’t want to take a shot of my espresso, how about one from Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson, the duo who have called more NBA finals than anyone else in NBA history. The pair thinks it’s great the top two teams have made it there, isn’t that the point of a championship? On the 2018 NBA Finals Media Conference Call the pair were able to give their two sense about the finals. What do the most underrated team in finals history have to do to pull this? Jeff expressed that no matter who came out of the Eastern Conference they would have been the underdogs. The Cavaliers have no choice but to put players on the wood who are the most strategic and can make plays off the dribble and also play fast to stop the Warriors’ lateral quickness. He says the Cavs must be “lights out” from the three-point line if they want any chance and keep the games to a low score. Mark mentioned how crucial they have to be with their mistakes because there is NO DOUBT in his mind that Golden State will make them pay for them. He thinks the team who is the most disciplined and the team that takes care of the ball on offense will be the ones coming out on top. The pair both agreed that the amount of pick and rolls we see in the NBA have made everything a 1-1 game. According to Jeff, it is a necessity that players punish their defenders for switching players and take advantage of these switches, something the post players seem to have a hard time with.
So how is this duo supposed to make this story line of the teams fourth meeting in the finals exciting? Well it’s not really up to them. They’ll tell stories that some will love and some won’t because they’ve heard before. But after all it’s 2018, pleasing everyone is impossible. If James and the Cavs take game one at Golden State the interest of people will sky rocket.
To end, I’ll leave you with a quote from Jeff that could be the mantra of the series. “I’ve always laughed at the saying strength and numbers, I say strength and stars”.