LeBron James was in superb form as the Cleveland Cavaliers became the first team to overturn a 3-1 deficit in the best-of-seven NBA finals as they beat Golden State Warriors to win the title on Sunday night/Monday morning.
Cavaliers won the deciding game 93-89 to complete their comeback against the defending champions – who had won a record 73 games out of 82 in the regular season.
James scored 27 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds to help Cleveland to their first NBA title.
“I gave it everything I had,” he said.
Kyrie Irving scored 26 points for the Cavaliers including a three-pointer with 52 seconds remaining that gave Cleveland a decisive lead in the game with the sides tied at 89-89.
Coming back from 3-1 down to win the title was a first in NBA finals history – and it was done against the best regular season team in history.
Led by Most Valuable Player Steph Curry, the Warriors set a new record in the regular season as they won 73 games, beating a record set by Michael Jordan’s all-conquering Chicago Bulls side in 1995-96.
The title is the first in the Cavaliers’ history too and and ended a 52-year drought in the city of Cleveland for any major sporting title.
The last was an NFL crown for Cleveland Browns in 1964 and the wait represented the longest sporting barren spell for any US city.
LeBron was named Most Valuable Player of the finals for the third time in his career following the game. He also won it in 2012 and 2013 while helping Miami Heat to the championship.
He ended his four-year spell with Miami to return to his home-town side in 2014 and following Sunday’s victory, said: “I’ve had a goal for two years since I came back to bring a championship to the city.
“I poured my heart, my blood, my sweat and my tears into this game. This is special.
“To continue to be an inspiration to our city, it means everything. I’m happy to be a part of it.”