“Obviously it’s a do or die game for us. Can’t afford to go down 3-0.”
Coming into Game three, the Cleveland Cavaliers knew there had to be major adjustments and improvements from the previous two games in Oakland in order to leave the arena with the win. But with the Golden State Warriors leading the series with two wins at home and starter Kevin Love unable to play, would the home field advantage be enough?
Withing the first three minutes of the first quarter, the Cavaliers had a strong 9-0 lead as Richard Jefferson made the first three pointer in the game. Andrew Bogut was quick to get his head in the game and complete the first four points for the Warriors. But even with the Warriors trying to eliminate a huge lead, it still wasn’t enough as Kyrie Irving and Lebron James combined for 14 points in just nine minutes. With 1:20 left in the first quarter, Irving solidified a 20 point lead with a three pointer. He would lead the Cavaliers with 16 points as they led over the Warriors 33-16 at the end of the quarter.
Going into the second quarter from a 17 point deficit, the Warriors were prepared to be the team that they are and not go down without a fight. But it seemed as if they could never get the right rhythm as their star players were unable to make big plays. Tristan Thompson seemed to have Stephen Curry on lock down as he was able to make huge turnovers, and cause Curry to make hurried shots. While also playing good defense, Thompson was the go to man for rebounds as he lead with seven and would later finish with 13 in total. But the person that seemed to surprise everyone was J.R. Smith.
Smith hadn’t been playing to best of his abilities as in game one and two he scored a total of eight points. Tonight, he was unstoppable. He would make his first three point jumper with 4:48 left in the first half. But it still seemed the League’s MVP was MIA throughout the first has he only had two points and was 0-4 at the three-point line. He and Klay Thompson combined for 15 points, where Irving and James combined for 30 as the Cavaliers led 51-43 going in the half.
With the Warriors’ star players weren’t playing to the best of their abilities, the Cavaliers’ starting five still had something to prove. Smith and James would complete back to back three-point jumpers leading with 70-48. Having only two points in the first half, Curry had a second wind a started to take his team by control, has he would improve to be 3-9 from the three point line. It would still not be enough to overpower the Cavs as they had a 20 point lead, 89-69, going into the last quarter.
Even with 12 minutes remaining in the final quarter, it was already a known fact that the Cavaliers won game three. With a 20 point lead and Iman Shumpert and Smith shooting two more incredible threes, the game was theirs. There was definitely no rain tonight from the Splash brothers Curry and Thompson as they only combined for 29 points and were 4-16 from the three point line. While Draymond Green, who was the star player in game two only finished with six points. The team finished 32-76 from the field goal line and 9-33 from the 3-point line. For the Cavaliers, four of the starting five finished in double figures as James led the team with 32 points, Irving followed behind with 30 points and leading with eight assists as they are the are the third set of teammates in the last 20 seasons to score 30 points each in a finals game. They finished 48-91 from the field and 12-25 from the 3-point line.
“We’re gonna give it everything that we’ve got and leave it all on the floor.” And that it is exactly what they did; came and conquered. #ALLin216