The Cleveland Cavaliers have faced adversity and drama from start to finish, but their one constant is the best player in the world, and that's LeBron James. "King James" led his team to their fourth straight NBA Finals appearance with an 87-79 win over the Boston Celtics in Game 7 Sunday night. James finished with 35 points, 15 rebounds, and nine assists, as he is entering his eighth straight Finals, dating back to his time with the Miami Heat, where he reached the Finals in all four seasons in South Beach. The Cavaliers once again faced an early deficit, trailing by eight after one quarter, but the low-scoring affair saw them hold the Celtics to 36 second-half points. The win was the first close game of the series, as the road team won in the series for the first time. It was the Celtics' first home loss in 11 games at the TD Garden this postseason, as they could not record the most important home win that was needed. LeBron was the problem, as the MVP candidate played all 48 minutes, scoring 12 of his points in the fourth quarter, and earning his sixth straight Game-7 victory. It was the 100th game for not only the Cavs, but also LeBron, who played in all 82 regular season contests for the first time in his career. The Celtics were looking to get to the Finals for the first time since 2010, but them being without Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward prevented them from taking that next step. Jayson Tatum had 24 points to lead the Celtics in their final game of the season. The Cavs will battle either the Golden State Warriors or Houston Rockets, who will play a Game 7 of their own in the Western Conference Finals on Monday night.
Allen's HR Gives Indians Win in 14 Innings
The Cleveland Indians have struggled around the .500 mark for the entire season so far, but they still remain in first place in the AL Central, even if it doesn't feel like it. Either way, a win like Sunday afternoon could be exactly what they needed to spark themselves and pull away in the sub-.500 division. Greg Allen took the first pitch from Brad Peacock in the 14th inning and went deep to give the Indians a 10-9 walk-off win over the Houston Astros. The win gives the Tribe a stunning win after Houston pulled away with a six-run eighth inning. The Indians responded by scoring five times in the ninth to force extra innings. That rally was sparked by RBI singles from Yonder Alonso, Jason Kipnis, Erik Gonzalez, Francisco Lindor, and Michael Brantley. The Astros would take another lead in the top half of the 14th on a long ball from Evan Gattis that traveled 421 feet. The Indians once again responded, as Alonso tied the game with a home run of his own before Allen ended the afternoon. The win moves the Indians a game over .500, as they hang on to a 3.5-game lead over the Detroit Tigers and Minnesota Twins in the Central. Collin McHugh gave up the tying blast to Alonso, but Peacock suffered his second loss on the only pitch he threw. The Astros dropped two of three to the Indians over the weekend, as their lead is now just a game over the Seattle Mariners in the AL West. They were led by Jose Altuve, who had four hits and two RBI on Sunday, and had a streak of 10 straight hits broken up with a lineout in the ninth inning. That streak was good for the Astros' franchise record. Gattis went deep twice on the day, including a three-run shot during their six-run eighth inning. Houston will move on to the Bronx for a challenging series with New York Yankees on Monday. The Indians stay home to host the Chicago White Sox.
Braves Avoid Sweep, Earn 30th Win
The Atlanta Braves got past Chris Sale on Sunday afternoon, which was good enough to put them back in first place in the NL East. Sale allowed six runs as the Braves avoided a sweep at Fenway Park with a 7-1 win over the Boston Red Sox. The win is their 30th of the season, putting them back in first place in the NL East, just a half game ahead of the Philadelphia Phillies, who lost to the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday. They did lose rookie Ronald Acuna Jr. to a knee and back injury after he went down while beating out an infield single. There is no word on the severity of the injury, but the Braves had to move on with the day, and that they did. Mike Foltynewicz took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning, and gave up a run on three hits over seven innings. Tyler Flowers had the big blast with a three-run shot off of Sale, giving the Braves just their second win in the past six games, and fourth in the past 14 at Fenway Park. The Red Sox ace suffered his second loss of the year, allowing six runs over 4.1 innings. Before this tough outing, he hand't allowed more than three runs in any of his 11 starts this season. The Red Sox were without star outfielder Mookie Betts due to left side tightness. Betts is leading the way with a .359 average, and is tied for first with Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels with 17 home runs. Manager Alex Cora said after the game that he does not expect Betts back on Monday. The Red Sox only gave Sale one run of support in Sunday's loss, but the Braves were getting to the left-hander, including a three-run fifth, capped off by Freddie Freeman's two-run double. The Braves will return home for a doubleheader on Memorial Day with the New York Mets. The Red Sox will be at home to host the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday.