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A weary LeBron James rallied his team in Game 7 with what was nearly a triple-double – 35 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists.

The Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Boston Celtics 97-79 on Sunday to advance to the NBA finals for the fourth consecutive year behind 35 points from LeBron James.

They will play the winner of Monday night’s game between the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets in the NBA Finals, which start on Thursday.

Cleveland has faced the Warriors in the last three NBA Finals, winning in 2016 and losing in 2015 and 2017.

James will be making his eighth straight NBA Finals appearance. Only Bill Russell (10), Tom Heinsohn (nine) and Sam Jones (nine) have made more consecutive appearances in NBA history.

“This is a heck of an accomplishment by our ball club without the help of our star power forward,” James said of forward Kevin Love, who missed Sunday’s game after suffering a concussion in Game 6.

James played all 48 minutes of the game, scoring 35 points while recording 15 rebounds and nine assists.

Jayson Tatum scored 24 points to lead the Celtics, who lost at home for the first time this postseason in 11 games. Al Horford added 17 points and Marcus Morris had a double-double with 14 points and 12 boards.

Boston was denied its first Finals trip since 2010, when it lost to the rival Los Angeles Lakers in seven games.

Jeff Green had 19 points and eight rebounds, JR Smith scored 12 points and Tristan Thompson had 10 points and nine boards for the Cavaliers.

James, who entered with an NBA-record Game 7 average of 34.9 points, improved to 6-2 lifetime in Game 7s.

Green’s 3-pointer with 4:56 left in the third quarter put Cleveland up 53-51, the Cavs’ first lead since the opening minutes. Cleveland went ahead by as many as five after that before taking a 59-56 lead into the fourth.

Tatum hit a 3-pointer after his driving dunk over James put Boston up 72-71 with 6:04 remaining in the game, but Green answered with another trey at the 5:44 mark, and Cleveland didn’t relinquish the lead after that.

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