THE Cleveland Cavaliers made up for a sluggish opening quarter with a huge third to take control then held on to beat the Celtics, 87-79, in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday in Boston (Monday, Manila time).
LeBron James flirted with a triple double with 35 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists to lift the Cavs to the 4-3 win in the Eastern Conference finals and book his eighth straight trip to the NBA Finals.
The Cavaliers, without Kevin Love due to a concussion, took charge with a 20-13 third quarter after falling behind early, 18-26.
Jeff Green had 19 points and eight rebounds, while JR Smith scored 12.
Tristan Thompson started at center in place of Love and wound up with 10 points and nine rebounds.
Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 24 points, while Al Horford added 17.