Former Cavaliers Forward Opens Up About LeBron James’ Historic Block in 2016 NBA Finals vs Warriors

Published 07/16/2021, 7:20 AM EDT
Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James (23) participates during a practice session before Game 3 of the NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio, on Tuesday, June 7, 2016. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) (Photo by MediaNews Group/Bay Area News via Getty Images)


In Game-4 of the NBA 2021 Finals, Giannis Antetokounmpo pulled off a clutch block against Phoenix Suns’ DeAndre Ayton. The block came at a crucial stage and helped the Bucks square the series. As the internet went wild over the block, it was like a flashback to the 2016 NBA Finals where LeBron James pulled off ‘that’ block to deny Andre Iguodala of the Golden State Warriors.

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Cleveland Cavaliers vs GSW is still one of the greatest finals

The 2016 edition of the NBA culminated in one of the most climactic endings in the recent past. It was LeBron James vs Stephen Curry in the battle of the greats. After taking a 3-1 lead that was of paramount importance, the Warriors squandered their lead.

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CLEVELAND, UNITED STATES – JUNE 16: LeBron James (R) of Cavaliers and Stephen Curry (L) of Warriors in action during the Game 6 of the 2015 NBA Finals between Golden State Warriors vs Cleveland Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Cem Ozdel/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

In Game-7, the two teams were battling neck-to-neck to clinch the title. The atmosphere at the Oracle Arena was one of the best that the NBA has ever seen. Tied at 89-89 deep into Q4, the Warriors made a successful defensive rebound and were on the counterattack. As Andre Iguodala made his way to the rim, LeBron James pulled off one of the most demonic blocks of the 21st century. The block shifted momentum in the Cavaliers’ favor, and they went on to take the game 93-89.

Richard Jefferson on the Cavaliers huddle after LeBron James’ block

Reacting to the Cavaliers dugout after the run of play, former Cavaliers player Richard Jefferson had his say.

I kid you not, I kid you not! In seven, after the seven games, that was the first time I thought oh, we’re gonna win this. I kid you not. Because it was back and forth and everyone knows and everyone’s talked about that game, and it’s one of the more dissected theories.”

“But it was like that was the first moment where I was like wait, we’re gonna win this. Because it was like now, the time is running out, now it’s becoming a 1-2 possession game, we had the ball, and it was like okay what are we gonna drop, what are we gonna do. Because at that moment we had control,” Jefferson said on the Dan Patrick Show.
On whether LeBron spoke during the huddle or not, Jefferson said, “No I think that was when they were talking about trying to get the ball to Kyrie, trying to get Steph on him. That was the difference for us, trying to get Steph in more pick and rolls, because the Warriors defense was so impeccable.”

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LeBron James’ block still remains one of the best moments in NBA history, and some have also gone to the extent of terming it as one of the biggest game-changing moments in sport. All eyes are now on the 2021 Finals, which seems to be going down to the wire as well. Who will emerge victorious?

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Sankalp Harikrishnan

98 articles

Sankalp Harikrishnan is a tennis and NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He aspires to pursue Sports Journalism and has represented his institution in cricket, badminton, football, and table tennis. Apart from his professional desires, Sankalp does voluntary service with his friends to feed hungry animals on a regular basis.

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