The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors are about to meet for the third time in as many years for an NBA finals rematch. In fact, this marks the first time that any two teams have faced off in The Finals three straight years and the first tie-breaking trilogy.

Can the Cavs repeat their 2016 magic, or will the Warriors get take the title back home to Oakland? All will be revealed when the series starts on June 1. However, the Warriors will have some major hurdles to jump if they want to take the championship away from Cleveland.

Thompson to be the deciding factor in the series?

According to ESPN, The Golden State Warriors will not only have to deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers' three-headed monster of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love but the Cavs big man, Tristan Thompson will cause a huge problem for Golden State as they try to regain their former glory.

While Tristan hasn't always been a force to be reckoned with on the court, the Cavs center has grown his game since being drafted, but it is his heart that has impressed the Cavaliers organization. The report reveals that a few years back when the Cavs were facing the Bulls in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, Derrick Rose pulled off a game-winning shot over Thompson to take Game 3 of the series.

Later, Tristan was reportedly so upset with himself that he didn't appear in the Cavs locker room for the post-game huddle. Instead, he was "weeping" in the showers, and his teammates Mike Miller and James Jones had to drag him out. "That's who Tristan is," Miller said. "You don't win championships without guys like him." It's that heart, emotion, and determination that could lead Tristan to be the unsung hero of the 2017 NBA Finals.

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Tristan's bond with his teammates

In addition, Tristan Thompson has built a strong bond with his teammates, including LeBron James. Before LeBron packed his bag and headed home to the Cleveland Cavaliers, he was busy winning championships in Miami. James, who shares an agent with Tristan Thompson, suggested that if Tristan ever wanted to be a champion that he experience the NBA Finals firsthand. So, Tristan headed to Miami where he watched Game 6 of the series, and later Game 7.

Flash forward a few years and Tristan and LeBron are brothers on the same side, looking to repeat the championship that they fought so hard for in 2016. "No kid wants to grow up and be Tristan Thompson," said Rick Barnes, who coached Thompson at Texas. "But if they knew what coaches knew, they might." Tristan Thompson and the Cleveland Cavaliers will open up the 2017 NBA Finals in Oakland on Thursday.