Glenn Kaplan: How Much Longer will Lebron James Rule the East For?

Cavs even up the Eastern Conference Finals in Game 4, and now the pressure is really on Boston to win Game 5

James, playing in perhaps his final game for the Cavs in Cleveland, delivered another sensational performance - he added 11 rebounds and nine assists while playing all but two minutes - to avoid elimination and delay any decisions about his future.

His eighth straight NBA Finals sets up as one of his most hard, flanked by a largely unheralded set of teammates who force him to do much more at 33 than most other players are ever asked.

One for every win by James the past five times his team has played a Game 7.

Boston continued to apply the pressure, however, with Terry Rozier cutting the lead to 10 with his fifth three-pointer of the night in the dying seconds of the third.

After a season full of turmoil, that included a major revamp of the roster at February's trade deadline with six players offloaded and four acquired, this is arguably seen as James' greatest achievement ever.

It was James' seventh 40-point game of the 2018 postseason, tying Michael Jordan for the most such games in a single postseason since 1989.

LeBron was already putting up MVP-caliber numbers in the regular season, but he's since taken his game to a different level. It would be almost impossible for the Celtics to not think about it heading into tonight's game.

Moments later, James drilled a 3-pointer from the left wing to finally put away the young Celtics, who will now feel the huge pressure of trying to hold off the three-time champion.

This has been the most grueling playoff run in the four years since James returned to the Cavs.

"I think we've played now until May 25th and May 27th the last two years, and we started on September 25th", Celtics coach Brad Stevens said.

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But during the first quarter this happened, and Kevin Love never made a return to the game.

The victor of the series will take on either the reigning champion Golden State Warriors or Houston Rockets in the championship series.

"I love the way we defended and for the most part if you take away Game 1 and the second half of Game 2, we've been defending at a high clip", James said. Rozier cut it to a seven-point game, 87-80, with his sixth three of the night early in the fourth and finished with 28 points.

That's just one of many reasons I can't wait for Sunday's game. Now the series heads back to Boston for Game 7 on Sunday night to decide who goes to the NBA Finals. Jeff Green started in Love's place and scored 19 points.

"Great defense by (Jayson) Tatum, great shots by LeBron", Stevens said.

The Celtics have had more time to get used to their injuries: Gordon Hayward has been out since the first game of the season, and Kyrie Irving has been sidelined since March.

So far in the conference finals, James has averaged 30.8 points, 8.2 assists, and 7.4 rebounds per game.

Marcus Morris and Marcus Smart combined for 20 points off the bench on 7-for-17 from the field and 3-for-7 from deep.

But James keeps showing he can do it, and he can't wait for his chance to win another ring.

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