The Trilogy has arrived.
The Warriors. The Cavaliers. Facing each other in the NBA Finals for the third consecutive postseason. The series begins June 1 with Game 1 at Oracle Arena.
With a 135-102 victory over the Celtics Thursday night in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Cavs advance to face a Warriors team riding the wave created by being the first club in NBA history to start the postseason with 12 straight wins.
With the teams splitting the first two Finals, the Warriors winning in 2015 and the Cavs prevailing last June, this one is to break the tie.
In the meantime, both teams have done some significant retooling.
The Warriors last summer added four-time scoring champion Kevin Durant, along with veterans JaVale McGee, Zaza Pachulia and David West.
Though LeBron James remains the hub of the Cavs, the team made several in-season changes, most notably adding veterans Kyle Korver and Deron Williams.
The Warriors came into the playoffs having earned the No. 1 overall seed by virtue of their NBA-best 67-15 record. They’re 27-1 since March 11, having ended the regular season by winning 15 of their last 16 games before taking out Portland, Utah and San Antonio in four games each to reach The Finals.
The Cavaliers (51-31) held the top seed in the East for most of the season before staggering over the final six weeks, going 9-12 over their final 21 games, including four consecutive losses to end the season.
Cleveland seems to have recovered from its late-season slump, sweeping Indiana and Toronto in the first two rounds before ousting the Celtics in five.
The Warriors and Cavs split two games in the regular season, each team winning on its home floor. Cleveland took a 109-108 decision on Christmas Day, while the Warriors came back for a 126-91 on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Oakland.
The NBA Finals schedule can be seen below.
Game 1 – Thu June 1 Cleveland at Golden State 6:00PM
Game 2 – Sun June 4 Cleveland at Golden State 5:00PM
Game 3 – Wed June 7 Golden State at Cleveland 6:00PM
Game 4 – Fri June 9 Golden State at Cleveland 6:00PM
Game 5 * Mon June 12 Cleveland at Golden State 6:00PM
Game 6 * Thu June 15 Golden State at Cleveland 6:00PM
Game 7 * Sun June 18 Cleveland at Golden State 5:00PM