That's the same situation the team was in during Game 6 when LeBron James went for 46 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers won 109-99. Through all 21 elimination games of his career, he's averaged 33.5 points, 10.8 rebounds, and 7.3 assists.
But the Cavs have LeBron James - the best player in the world - who's looking to reach the NBA Finals for the fourth straight season with the Cavs and eighth consecutive season overall. James has historically performed well in Game 7s. He suffered a concussion, and will not be available for Game 7. The five-time All-Star barely had a chance to do anything on Friday night at The Q, and he's out for tonight's Game 7 in Boston after inadvertently cracking heads with Celtics rookie Jayson Tatum early in the affair.
A serious leg injury not only could have halted LeBron's quest for his fourth National Basketball Association title, but it also could have caused his team to crumble down the stretch without him and Kevin Love on the floor.
The King gave the sold-out crowd at The Q quite a scare in the fourth quarter, hitting the deck grasping his right knee after a collision with Larry Nance Jr. They're also significantly younger, which will play a role as the teams meet for their third game in five days.
In the face of impossible odds, LeBron helped the Cavs overcome a 3-1 series deficit when he hopped into the phone booth to deliver the highlight of his career; a late game block on Andre Iguodala.
"I just felt someone fall into my leg, and my leg kind of went in", James said after the game, per James McMenamin of ESPN.
In a simply epic 109-99 Game 6 team performance last night in OH, the 2016 champions showed the Boston Celtics it ain't over until its over. The Cavaliers have not placed Love in concussion protocol, but he is listed as questionable for Game 7. James was noticeably affected, but stayed on the court to make sure the game didn't get away from them. "I just think our fans are going to be ready to go from the beginning".
At one time, James, Irving and Love were Cleveland's Big 3, a power trio that won a title and went to three straight Finals before fracturing.
"I didn't see him coming, it was bad", Tatum said. Now Boston has a game plan, is playing on its home floor and has done well against Cleveland at TD Garden.
"We needed him to be big, and he was big", said Cavs coach Tyronn Lue. George Hill added a playoff-high 20 points for the Cavs.
With injuries to some key pieces, the Celtics have basically gone with a seven-man rotation against the Cavaliers - bringing Marcus Morris and Marcus Smart off the bench. The Celtics know that they can come together and beat James at his best, but they need each and every player to do it. "I know what I'm capable of doing, and I'm going to trust everything I put into it".
"At the end of the day, you have to make your own history", said Jaylen Brown.