It’s not often that a defending champion with a 12-1 playoff record would be viewed as an underdog heading into the Finals, but these are not normal times. The Golden State Warriors have a historically talented roster and are currently undefeated in the playoffs.
As a result of this, many view the Warriors as a considerable favorite to win the championship. ESPN’s BPI gives the Cavaliers just a seven percent chance to win the championship.
Despite the pessimistic national view, Cavs general manager David Griffin doesn’t seem discouraged. The Cavs seem to struggle more as a favorite and thrive when they are counted out.
"I hope everybody says we have no chance," General Manager David Griffin said during a TV interview following the Cavaliers' 135-102 win Thursday night against the Boston Celtics, clinching a third straight NBA Finals appearance.
"Obviously the team we're playing is as good as you can possibly put together, it's going to be an unbelievable battle for us, but I think [the Cavs] love battling together. The greater the odds, the better we seem to play together. We really do rally around each other in that sense."
It’s a familiar situation for the Cavs, and one that has proven to be successful for them in the past. Unlike past years, gone are concerns over chemistry or questions about whether the roster is good enough. They know they can win, despite the odds not being in their favor. And they did it last year in coming back 3-1.