The 2018 NBA Finals matchup has yet to be determined, but the NBA announced the finals will start on Thursday, May 31. The NBA has not released an official schedule, but Sports Media Watch has a projected NBA finals schedule for all seven games that can be seen below. Fans will see the winner of the Warriors-Rockets series take on the winner of the Cavaliers-Celtics matchup.
Prior to the start of the season, many expected to see a fourth straight finals between the Cavs and Warriors, extending an NBA record for consecutive finals matchups. Cleveland’s up and down regular season combined with the emergence of Houston caused many fans to speculate we could be in for a new finals matchup in 2018.
After dropping the first two games against the Celtics, the Cavs bounced back in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Rockets rebounded in Game 2 after their opening game loss showing they have the talent to make the Western Conference Finals go the distance.
The Warriors won both games against the Cavs during the regular season. Golden State has won two of the last three finals matchups against Cleveland. Boston split their two regular season games with Golden State.
Boston has been able to stay in contention for a finals birth despite the loss of their two best players, Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving. Young players like Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum have progressed faster than expected allowing the Celtics to make a deep postseason run. Veteran Al Horford has played just as much of a role anchoring Boston down low. The Celtics would appear to be overmatched talent-wise with either the Warriors or Rockets if they make the finals, but this has been the case throughout the playoffs.
The Warriors did not play at their normal level of consistency during the regular season, but have bumped up their intensity in the postseason. Golden State is looking to win back-to-back championships, and their third title in four years. For Cleveland, many have speculated this could be the final year of the LeBron James era. James can become a free agent this off-season, and there are questions about the Cavs ability to compete long-term with little salary cap flexibility. Several of the Cavs players on the current roster have failed to live up to their pricey contracts.
Houston has been eyeing the Warriors ever since the team traded for Chris Paul over the off-season as the Rockets looked to keep up with Golden State’s firepower.
Here’s a look at the projected NBA finals schedule courtesy of Sports Media Watch.
NBA Finals 2018 Schedule
All times listed are in Eastern, and Games 5-7 are if necessary.
|Thursday, May 31||Game 1||9 p.m. ABC|
|Sunday, June 3||Game 2||8 p.m. ABC|
|Wednesday, June 6||Game 3||9 p.m. ABC|
|Friday, June 8||Game 4||9 p.m. ABC|
|Monday, June 11||Game 5*||9 p.m. ABC|
|Thursday, June 14||Game 6*||9 p.m. ABC|
|Sunday, June 17||Game 7*||8 p.m. ABC|
Source: Heavy Sports