USA TODAY Sports’ Jeff Zillgitt and Jarrett Bell break down Thursday’s Game 6 between the Warriors and the Cavs.
There have been moments that were too big for LeBron James.
The Eastern Conference semifinals against the Boston Celtics in 2010, and the 2011 NBA Finals when James’ Miami Heat met the Dallas Mavericks come to mind.
But there’s been sizable growth in James’ mental game since then. James’ epic Game 5 on Monday night in the NBA Finals (41 points, 16 rebounds, seven assists, while facing elimination no less) was even more evidence of the progress he’s made. It was quickly framed as a legacy game and compared to his masterpiece in Boston in 2012 – a win that staved off elimination in the Conference Finals and chipped away at the notion that he wasn’t a clutch performer.
But James wasn’t much for comparisons.
“Going into Boston, being down 3-2, you know we understood that, hey, listen, the season is over if we don’t go out and try to take care of business,” James said after Game 5. “I had to come out and do…