LeBron James will make his sixth NBA Finals appearance as the Cleveland Cavaliers take on the Golden State Warriors beginning Thursday. A look back at James' previous five chances at the Larry O'Brien Trophy.
2006-07 Cleveland Cavaliers
It took LeBron James just two seasons to lead his team to the NBA Finals. In his sophomore season, James led the Cavaliers past the Washington Wizards, New Jersey Nets and Detroit Pistons, respectively, in the Eastern Conference playoffs to get to the Finals against the San Antonio Spurs. James averaged 42.6 minutes, 22 points, seven rebounds and 6.8 assists in the series as the Spurs swept the Cavs.
2010-11 Miami Heat
After a dramatic move to take his talents to South Beach, James, as part of the Big Three with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, again found himself in the NBA Finals. The Heat finished with a 58-24 regular season record and trampled past the Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls in five games each in the Eastern Conference playoffs. But Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks proved to be too much for the Heat. With homecourt advantage, the Cavs took a 2-1 series lead, stealing Game 3 in Dallas by two. From there on out it was all Mavs as they went on to win the series in six games. James again barely left the court, averaging 43.6 minutes in the Finals, but dropped to 17.8 points per game compared to his 26.7 in the regular season.
2011-12 Miami Heat
The third time was the charm for James. After cruising past the Knicks and the Indiana Pacers in the first two rounds of the playoffs, the Heat faced its first real challenge in the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics. The Heat jumped out to a 2-0 lead on the Celtics at home, but the Celtics rallied to win the next three to take a 3-2 lead and put the Heat on the brink of elimination. James turned it on in Games 6 and 7, scoring 45 and 31 points, respectively, to bring the Heat back to the Finals against Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Heat dropped Game 1 in Oklahoma City as Durant and Russell Westbrook combined for 61 points, but it was all Heat the rest of the way as Miami took the series in five games. James averaged 28.6 points, 10.2 rebounds, 7.4 assists and 1.6 steals in the series to win the NBA Finals MVP.
2013-13 Miami Heat
James and the Heat once again faced no trouble in the first two rounds of the playoffs as they swept the Milwaukee Bucks and beat the Chicago Bulls in five games. The Heat battled the Indiana Pacers in a back-and-forth conference finals to a Game 7. James turned it on and put up 32 points to give the Heat a 99-76 win and a third straight NBA Finals appearance. James stellar performance of 25.3 points, 10.9 rebounds, seven assists and 2.3 steals per game led the Heat past the San Antonio Spurs in seven games, and he was once again crowned the NBA Finals MVP.
2013-14 Miami Heat
The Big Threes quest for multiple titles ended at two. For the fourth time in a row, the Heat made it back to the NBA Finals after knocking off the Charlotte Bobcats, Brooklyn Nets and Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference playoffs. In a rematch against the Spurs, San Antonio got redemption. The Heat quickly went down, 1-0, in the series but bounced back with a 98-96 victory to even the series in Game 2 behind a double-double from James. That was the Heats lone taste of victory as Kawhi Leonard and company ran away with the Finals in five games. James averaged 28.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, four assists and two steals per game in the series, but it wasnt enough to win a third straight title.