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Daily Debate: Who will win the NBA Finals?

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Whose Fans Are Better: Cavaliers or Warriors?

In name, this year's NBA Finals is a rematch between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers. But that's where the similarities between the two series stop.

Both teams are drastically different than the versions that laced up in the Finals last June. The Warriors, now a record-setting, league-revolutionizing juggernaut, were "merely" a 67-win force a year ago. Cleveland, without Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving due to injury, rode LeBron James to the tune of 32.7 shots a night over the six-game series. This postseason, which included an 10-0 start, Kevin Love has finally found his role and just two Cavs are shooting under 40 percent from three-point range.

Both teams are drastically improved, and it should result in a much more competitive series -- one that, at the very least, won't require James to single-handedly carry Cleveland against the best team in the NBA. But can the Cavs actually upset the 73-win Dubs and finally win a title?

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They certainly stand a better chance than they did in 2015, but it will likely still require major adjustments from rookie head coach Ty Lue. Through the entire postseason, the Cavs have started a bigger lineup with James at the small forward, while Love and Tristan Thompson man the big positions -- an alignment that only played three minutes together against Golden State in the regular season, according to NBA.com.

It'll be a look that the Warriors haven't seen much of, but one that could pose disadvantages for Cleveland.

Pairing Irving and Love -- two defensive liabilities at positions where Golden State thrives -- is a risky proposition, if not supplemented with other plus defenders. A potential lineup of Irving, Iman Shumpert, James, Love and Channing Frye could do the trick -- giving James shooters to kick out to while also inserting versatile defenders at important spots on the floor.

NBA/Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Playing James at a bigger position would also present Cleveland with its best chance at disturbing Draymond Green, who -- as the Oklahoma City Thunder and Kevin Durant showed last series -- is best counteracted with a longer forward with finishing ability. LeBron certainly falls under this category.

The Cavs have shown this postseason that they've finally begun to click at the right time, but they're still going up against one of the most talented and versatile teams in NBA history.

If Cleveland chooses to match Kyrie Irving onto Stephen Curry, the two-time league MVP should have no problem thriving. According to 82games.com, Irving allowed opposing point guards to post an 18.5 PER over the regular season.

To this point, nobody has proven able to beat the Warriors at their own game. Cleveland, which only established a true team identity in recent months, will need their good fortune to continue to stand a chance -- but if their playoffs-best 43.4-percent long-distance shooting holds up, this has a chance of being a long series. Working against the Cavs, though: Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green pose a tandem that has subdued James in the past, and is capable of doing so again.

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One thing is certain: The Warriors aren't a team LeBron James can beat by himself. The hope for Cleveland is that he won't have to.

This is the best the Cavs have looked all season -- perhaps the best they've looked since LeBron's first go-around with the team. They're far less weathered than Golden State, which is coming off an exhausting seven-game bout with the Thunder, facing elimination in three straight games.

There's still the notion that Cleveland isn't even the best team Golden State is facing this postseason -- that title belonged to the Thunder, who proved unable to seal the deal last round.

The Cavs are rolling. But as long as the Warriors don't unravel, they'll be looking at a repeat.

Verdict: Warriors in 7

See the best photos of the NBA Playoffs

18 PHOTOS
Best of the 2016 NBA playoffs
See Gallery
Daily Debate: Who will win the NBA Finals?
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 22: Jonas Jerebko #8 of the Boston Celtics and Evan Turner #11 react after a foul was called against Turner during the fourth quarter of Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs against the Atlanta Hawks at TD Garden on April 22, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Celtics defeat the Hawks 111-103. NOTE TO USER User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MAY 21: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts after being hit in the face by teammate Tristan Thompson #13 during the first half against the Toronto Raptors in game three of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at Air Canada Centre on May 21, 2016 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MAY 11: DeMarre Carroll #5 of the Toronto Raptors shoots the ball and is fouled by Josh McRoberts #4 of the Miami Heat in the first half of Game Five of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at the Air Canada Centre on May 11, 2016 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 27: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers scores on a dunk in a 108-98 win over the Los Angeles Clippers during Game Five of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs on April 27, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and condition of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 11: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after making a three-point basket in the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers during Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs on May 11, 2016 at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - APRIL 29: Myles Turner #33 of the Indiana Pacers celebrates during the 101-83 win over the Toronto Raptors in game six of the 2016 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on April 29, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 26: Mike Scott #32 of the Atlanta Hawks battles under the basket against Jae Crowder #99 of the Boston Celtics in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on April 26, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia. NOTE TO USER User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - APRIL 26: Norman Powell #24 of the Toronto Raptors dunks the ball late in the second half of Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Indiana Pacers during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at the Air Canada Centre on April 26, 2016 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OR - APRIL 23: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers drives to the basket on DeAndre Jordan #6 of the Los Angeles Clippers in the third quarter of Game Three of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at the Moda Center on April 23, 2016 in Portland, Oregon. The Blazers won the game 96-88. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - APRIL 18: Dwight Howard #12 of the Houston Rockets is guarded by Draymond Green #23, Andrew Bogut #12 and Leandro Barbosa #19 of the Golden State Warriors in the first quarter in Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at ORACLE Arena on April 18, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - APRIL 17: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers drives Reggie Jackson #1 of the Detroit Pistons during the second quarter of the NBA Eastern Conference Quarterfinals at Quicken Loans Arena on April 17, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Pistons 106-101. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
TORONTO, CANADA - APRIL 16: Myles Turner #33 of the Indiana Pacers goes up to shoot against Patrick Patterson #54 of the Toronto Raptors in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs on April 16, 2016 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory copyright notice. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 17:Boris Diaw #33 of the San Antonio Spurs battles JaMychal Green #0 of the Memphis Grizzlies for a rebound in Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center on April 17, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 28: Jae Crowder #99 of the Boston Celtics reacts after receiving his 6th personal foul against the Atlanta Hawks during the fourth quarter of Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at TD Garden on April 28, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Hawks defeat the Celtics 104-92. NOTE TO USER User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 02: Andre Iguodala #9 of the Golden State Warriors goes up to dunk the ball against J.R. Smith #5 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first half in Game 1 of the 2016 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 2, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 19: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts after defeating the Golden State Warriors 93-89 in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 19, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 19: LeBron James #23 and Kevin Love #0 of the Cleveland Cavaliers celebrate after defeating the Golden State Warriors 93-89 in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 19, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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