Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Photo: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Celtics are one of the favourites to win the NBA title. Their leader, Kyrie Irving, is confident his team can beat the Golden State Warriors in the Finals.

Here is what the 2016 NBA Champion told ESPN’S Jackie MacMullan: 

On whether the Celtics can defeat the Warriors: “Can we beat Golden State in a seven-game series? Yes. Because of who we have, and what we’re establishing here, not just for this season, but for hopefully for the next few years, something that’s pretty special.”

On if he is aware of the challenge to dethrone the defending champions: “I’ve played against Golden State in three straight Finals — two that I was able to participate in — and seeing them evolve, with the talent they have, and then adding DeMarcus Cousins, it’s like, ‘OK, the whole league is on notice.’

But there’s one factor that they’re aware of, and I’m aware of, and that’s that I’ve seen them up close. I’ve played them so many times. We’ve gone in a seven-game series, so I know what it takes.”

On how difficult it is to beat the Warriors in a seven-game series: “How do I communicate to our guys that this is the top-tier team, and we have to grow immensely in the next six months to beat them consistently? Not just one game, not just two, but in a seven-game series, because they’re so dang great. They’re a powerhouse.”