James Harden Headshot

James Harden said that their are no issues between himself and Dwight Howard.

Added 11/04/16 8:42 pm (EST)   Source
There have been reports recently that Harden did not enjoy playing with Howard over the past couple of years in Houston. With the Rockets getting set to make a stop in Atlanta on Saturday night, the two will meet on the court as opponents.
Avery Bradley Headshot

Bradley registered 23 points (10-20 FG, 2-5 3Pt, 1-1 FT), four rebounds and one assist over 32 minutes during Thursday's 135-102 loss to the Cavaliers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 8:47 am (EST)
Bradley once again took up the mantle of the go-to option on offense for Boston in the absence of Isaiah Thomas (hip), scoring over 20 points for the third time in the series. His 50 percent success rate from the field equaled his series-best tally from Game 1, and he drained multiple threes for the third time during the five-game set as well. Primarily due to Thomas' absence, Bradley finished the conference finals with an average of 19 shot attempts per contest, a definitive uptick from the first two rounds of the playoffs and the regular season. He'll head into the 2017-18 campaign coming off the best statistical season of seven-year career, having averaged 16.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.2 steals across 33.4 minutes.
Tristan Thompson Headshot

Thompson posted six points (1-3 FG, 4-4 FT) five rebounds, one assist and one block over 29 minutes during Thursday's 135-102 win over the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 8:23 am (EST)
With the Cavs' Big Three hitting on all cylinders once again, Thompson played a definitively complementary role for the third time in the series' five games. The 26-year-old stepped up offensively during the series when called upon, logging double-digit scoring efforts in Games 1 and 3, including a double-double in the latter. Thompson was very solid on the boards in particular during last season's Finals versus the Warriors, hauling in 10.1 rebounds over the seven games. Therefore, he's likely to play a pivotal part in the rebounding department at a minimum in what should be a tough matchup down low versus Zaza Pachulia during the upcoming series.
Deron Williams Headshot

Williams poured in 14 points (5-6 FG, 2-3 3Pt, 2-2 FT) during Thursday's 135-102 victory over the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 8:18 am (EST)
Williams was chucking away during his time on the court, posting his best shooting night of the postseason since Game 4 of the first round against the Pacers and draining his first three-pointers of the conference finals. The veteran point guard has proven to be a solid addition to the Cavs second unit and offers the security of an abundance of starting experience in the event of an injury to Kyrie Irving. As it has thus far in the playoffs, Williams' role in the Finals will likely fluctuate depending on game script, but he's likely to see minutes in the teens at a minimum in the majority of games.
Kyrie Irving Headshot

Irving supplied 24 points (9-15 FG, 4-8 3Pt, 2-2 FT), seven assists, two rebounds and two steals over 32 minutes during Thursday's 135-102 win over the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 8:13 am (EST)
After a modest Game 1 of the series in which he only mustered 11 points, Irving bounced back to average 29.5 points over the remaining four games. His assist total Thursday also matched his series high, and he managed to drain at least 60 percent of his shots for the fourth straight contest. Irving excelled during last season's Finals confrontation with the Warriors (27.1 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 2.1 steals) and will likely need to duplicate or exceed that effort to help the Cavaliers clinch a second consecutive NBA championship.
Kevin Love Headshot

Love posted 15 points (5-13 FG, 3-7 3Pt, 2-2 FT), 11 rebounds, three assists, four steals and one block over 28 minutes during Thursday's 135-102 win over the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 7:58 am (EST)
Love turned in his fifth double-double in as many games during the series to help close out the Celtics and send the Cavaliers back to the Finals for a third consecutive season. The 28-year-old finished the conference finals with averages of 22.6 points, 12.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.2 blocks across 33.4 minutes. Looking ahead, he'll look to put together a much better effort than his lackluster performance in last season's Finals, when he finished with averages of just 7.3 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.1 assists over 22.6 minutes.
LeBron James Headshot

James provided 35 points (13-18 FG, 4-7 3Pt, 5-8 FT), eight rebounds, three steals and one block over 35 minutes in Thursday's 135-102 win over the Celtics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Added 7:52 am (EST)
Sensing blood in the water, James had his killer instinct on full display Thursday, as he flashed a laser-sharp focus with his shot. It was his best shooting performance overall in the postseason and marked the second playoff game in which he eclipsed a 70 percent success rate from the field. The perennial All-Star also turned in his second-best rebounding effort of the series and best assist total since he'd dished out 12 against the Pacers in Game 3 of the quarterfinal round. Looking ahead, James will likely need to match or exceed his effort in last year's Finals (29.7 points, 11.3 rebounds, 8.9 assists, 2.6 steals, 2.3 blocks) to give the Cavaliers a chance of upending the Warriors for a second straight NBA championship.
Jae Crowder Headshot

Crowder (groin) will participate in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against Cleveland.

Added Yesterday 7:02 pm (EST)
Crowder injured his groin in Game 4, however the injury didn't appear to be too severe as he was able to play the remainder of the game and contribute 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists across 40 minutes. Although it's possible that he could be slightly hindered by the injury, Crowder is in Boston's starting five and will look to supply similar numbers Thursday night.
Amir Johnson Headshot

Johnson (shoulder) will play in Game 5 against the Cavaliers.

Added Yesterday 6:56 pm (EST)
Not all too surprising a decision considering Johnson was available in emergency situations for Game 4. Kelly Olynyk will continue to start at power forward but Johnson could provide a spark off the bench. Given the injury, the 30-year-old probably won't garner much fantasy value, especially with Jaylen Brown also cleared for the contest.
Jaylen Brown Headshot

Brown (hip) will play in Game 5 against the Cavaliers, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN New England reports.

Added Yesterday 6:41 pm (EST)
Brown suffered a minor hip injury during Game 4's loss but was able to plan through the pain and he'll now suit up for what could be the Celtics final game of the season. The rookie has averaged 18.5 minutes per game in the series but could see a slight dip in action due to the injury. If he does see less action, look for his minutes to be divided among Terry Rozier, Gerald Green and Marcus Smart.
Jae Crowder Headshot

Crowder is dealing with a groin injury, but is considered probable going into Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Cavaliers on Thursday, Chris Forsberg of ESPN.com reports.

Added 05/24/17 5:07 pm (EST)
Crowder was noticeably hobbled during Game 4, but was still able to play 40 minutes and record 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists. With the Celtics on the brink of elimination, Crowder is fully expected to again play through his injury and as long as the pain isn't too much to handle, look for him to take on his full complement of minutes. Crowder's status should be updated again after Thursday's morning shootaround.
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