LeBron James' historic Game 5 performance, in which he scored 44 points and hit the game-winning 3-pointer to give the Cavaliers a 3-2 series lead over the Pacers, is bringing back memories of Michael Jordan.
In his postgame press conference, Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue likened James' shot over Pacers forward Thaddeus Young to Jordan's iconic shot over Cavaliers guard Craig Ehlo in Game 5 of the first round of the 1989 Eastern Conference Playoffs. The two even finished those games with similar numbers: James with 44 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, Jordan with 44 points, nine rebounds and six assists.
"I think that LeBron shot might have been like Jordan's shot over Craig Ehlo in Cleveland," Lue said after the game. "Same play."
His Airness x The King pic.twitter.com/8MqXtnfRfP- SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 26, 2018
In the process, James made history. According to ESPN Stats & Info , James has now made more go-ahead shots in the final five seconds of the fourth quarter or overtime in his postseason career than Jordan. (James is 6-for-13 in those situations compared to 5-for-11 for Jordan). It also gave James one more buzzer-beater than Jordan in his postseason career.
The biggest difference was "The Shot" advanced the Bulls to the second round, whereas James and the Cavaliers are still one win away from a matchup with the Raptors or Wizards.
The Pacers will host the Cavaliers for Game 6 on Friday.