Thursday, 21 March, 2019

Defense fails Cavs in 113-91 Game 1 loss in NBA Finals

Rita Gibson | 02 June, 2017, 13:54

Steph Curry's wife Ayesha is his biggest cheerleader and is desperate to see her husband's Golden State Warriors take home the 2017 NBA Championship.

After a competitive first quarter, Game 1 could not have played out worse for the Cleveland Cavaliers. After winning the NBA Finals in 2015, winning an NBA record 73 games in the 2016 regular season and adding former MVP Kevin Durant to their roster in offseason, the Warriors are as terrifying this year as they've ever been. It doesn't matter that, with Game 1, KD silenced an army of detractors who claim his move to Oakland weakened the league. Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) dunks against the Golden State Warriors during the second half of Game 1 of basketball's NBA Finals in Oakland, Calif., Thursday, June 1, 2017.

"We could be a lot better than we were tonight, but in the finals, you get the W, we'll take it", Durant said. It is what it is. But Steph, Klay, Draymond, whoever you put him on is going to be a tough challenge.

"But that's what stands out". The last time it happened in any major North American team sport came in 1954-56 when Detroit and Montreal squared off in three straight Stanley Cup Finals. So when they go small, we can get to the paint and get pretty much anything we want. So that's one area we can do a better job in. That's huge for us.

Durant's Game One output tied his 2017 playoff high (Game Three of West semis vs. Utah) and marked his fourth 30+ game of the 2017 post-season.

Cavaliers: James' 3-pointer in the third quarter moved him past Reggie Miller (320) for second place on the National Basketball Association postseason list, which is led by Ray Allen with 385.

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That is why Windgate was at the South Carolina State Farmer's Market on Thursday getting a bag full. A hard freeze followed on the heels of the unusually warm winter, roughing up the trees even more.

With his big output in Game 1, Durant joined Hall of Famers Rick Barry, Michael Jordan and Shaquille O'Neal as the only players to score at least 25 points in each of his first six Finals games. So they're playing good basketball. "That's what you dream about as a kid, is to play at the highest level". I just go out there and play.

Durant provided a conundrum for Cleveland's defense.

Golden State's Draymond Green grabbed 11 rebounds and scored nine points while making Cleveland's Kevin Love work hard for his 15 points and 21 rebounds.

"Kevin's a competitor", Green said.

Durant, seeking his first National Basketball Association crown after leaving Oklahoma City for Golden State last July, hit 14-of-26 from the floor and helped frustrate James, who finished with 28 points on 9-of-20 shooting with 15 rebounds and eight assists in the first game of his seventh consecutive finals. And that would include a lopsided 12-1 disparity in turnovers, 18 fewer shots than the Warriors (not that it matter that much as Cleveland shot.395 before halftime), and an 11-7 beating in offensive rebounds that led to being on the short side of a 14-5 ledger in second chance points. He says "Winning the Championship would be unbelievable, I have always wanted to be a part of the moment where you are embracing your teammates and you know your fans are cheering for you because you are a champion, that's the moment that I want to be a part of". "You're not going to see insane celebrations". Getting a solid shot as a real contributor for the Warriors has been neat to see.

"The goal is to lock in", he said, "every 48 minutes".


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