The 2019 NBA Finals are rapidly approaching. At most, we have two games left in the Eastern Conference—the Toronto Raptors have won three in a row over the Milwaukee Bucks and hold a 3-2 series lead.
In the Western Conference, the Golden State Warriors swept the Portland Trail Blazers for their fifth straight Finals appearance.
While it certainly feels like the Warriors are headed toward yet another title, anything can happen over the course of seven games.
Whichever team emerges from the East will have a legitimate chance of knocking off Golden State. Here's everything you need to know to catch all the Finals action—along with some of the latest playoff buzz.
2019 NBA Finals
Game 1: Golden State at MIL/TOR, 9 p.m. ET
Game 2: Golden State at MIL/TOR, 8 p.m. ET
Game 3: MIL/TOR at Golden State, 9 p.m. ET
Game 4: MIL/TOR at Golden State, 9 p.m. ET
Game 5: Golden State at MIL/TOR, 9 p.m. ET
Game 6: MIL/TOR at Golden State, 9 p.m. ET
Game 7: Golden State at MIL/TOR, 8 p.m. ET
*All games broadcast on ABC, Live stream on WatchESPN
Bucks Still Have Confidence
Despite losing three games in a row for the first time this season, the Bucks have not lost confidence in their ability to bounce back and reach the Finals.
"We're not gonna fold," star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo told reporters. "We're the best team in the league. We're gonna go in, give it everything we got. We can't fold. We're gonna come back to Milwaukee being pissed."
To get back to Milwaukee, the Bucks will have to first win in Toronto on Saturday.
While Milwaukee finished with the best regular-season record, it's hard to agree that the Bucks are the best in the NBA right now. They're not even playing like the best team in their own conference, and a loss on Saturday night will have them out of the playoffs.
Yes, the Bucks are right to feel confident. They're just two wins away from reaching the NBA Finals, and they have an opportunity to close out their current series at home.
Tip-off for Saturday's game in Toronto is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET.
Kawhi Can Carry the Raptors to the Finals
While Antetokounmpo was arguably the best player in the regular season, Toronto's Kawhi Leonard has been the best player in this series—by far. The Raptors forward has played aggressive defense, has passed the ball well and has topped 30 points in all but one of the five contests.
While the Raptors have been able to slow Antetokounmpo by double- and triple-teaming him defensively, the Bucks have not found a solid answer for Leonard.
"They were sending two or three bodies at him, and kind of tilting the floor and making sure guys were loaded on him," Raptors guard Kyle Lowry said of Leonard, per Kevin Arnovitz of ESPN.com. "He was making the right passes, and we made some shots for him tonight. And then third quarter, he just—he's been doing it all playoffs. He went into iso and get-to-your-spot, and it was pretty impressive."
Some folks may now consider Leonard the best player in the NBA—and that's certainly open for debate. One thing is certain, though. As Bill Simmons of The Ringer recently pointed out, Leonard is having one of the best postseasons in league history:
Warriors Aren't Worried About Outside Perception
The Warriors are still the team to beat in the NBA, and they're going to be a tough challenge in the Finals—whether or not Kevin Durant returns from his calf injury.
The Warriors didn't need Durant to sweep the Trail Blazers, which has led to some fan debate over whether Golden State is actually better without him. While the questioning of who the team's best players actually are might rattle some squads, the Warriors aren't having any of it.
"We look out for each other, there's a little bit of sacrifice and it's about winning," Steph Curry said, per Ron Kroichick of the San Francisco Chronicle. "No matter who's on the floor, that's what we're about."
Whether Durant returns for the next series or not, the Warriors are going to be tough out for either Toronto or Milwaukee.