The Golden State Warriors completed a four-game sweep of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals with a 108-85 victory on Friday night.

The Warriors were heavy, heavy favorites in the series, but many evaluators thought the Cavs could at least make it a fairly competitive series due to having the best player in the world, LeBron James. The Cavs stunningly took Game 1 to overtime at Oracle Arena, and may have won in regulation if J.R. Smith didn’t dribble the clock out. LeBron was unbelievable in Game 1, with 51 points on 19-of-32 shooting from the field.

Well, the rest of the series wasn’t nearly as competitive, and while still very good, LeBron wasn’t the same player as Game 1. And there appears to be a reason for that!

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and USA Today’s Sam Amick report that LeBron suffered a serious right hand injury after punching a blackboard following the Game 1 loss at Oracle Arena.

LeBron reportedly had multiple MRIs on the hand, with his hand being so swollen after Game 1 that they couldn’t even get a clear diagnosis. After a second MRI, he was diagnosed with a right hand injury, that isn’t expected to require surgery. But clearly the injury had an impact on his performance, specifically with his outside shooting as Windhorst told Scott Van Pelt:

LeBron then met with the media while wearing a cast, and called the injury “self-inflicted.” He added that he “pretty much played the last three games with a broken hand.”

It’s hard to blame LeBron for being extremely frustrated and losing his cool, considering he basically took a team to the Finals on his own, and had a chance to win Game 1 on the road if not for a dumb decision by his teammate (while LeBron scored 51 points).

And let’s be real: the Cavs weren’t going to win the series anyway, but perhaps it would’ve gone longer than four games with a healthy LeBron.


About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at