The NBA Finals are underway and it’s the same old story: Cleveland vs. Golden State.
Like the previous rounds of the 2018 postseason, the Cavaliers have struggled to open strong. In fact, it seems like Cleveland has gotten more attention by some of their dramatics compared to the Warriors. At least the whole thing has made for incredibly entertaining finals.
Finals Game 1: Warriors (124) – Cavaliers (114)
The most memorable takeaway from Game 1 is LeBron’s reaction to J.R. Smith’s massive screw up in the final minutes. After the game, fans were blessed with a hilarious walkout of the press conference by LeBron that many likened to great reality television. On the court, James had 51 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists. Seriously, when one guy scores 51 points it’s time to start reevaluating the other players on the team. Kevin Love had 21 points and 10 rebounds while Smith had 10 points and 6 rebounds. The Warriors spread the ball around to their entire team throughout Game 1. Steph Curry (29), Klay Thompson (24), Kevin Durant (26), Draymond Green (13), and Shaun Livingston (10) all scored double digits. Green also had 11 rebounds and 9 assists, while Curry had 6 rebounds and 9 assists.
Finals Game 2: Warriors (122) – Cavaliers (103)
Starting the finals with a 0-2 start isn’t great for Cleveland. At least in Game 2, the Cavaliers relied less heavily on LeBron to score all of their points. He finished the game with 29 points, 13 assists, 9 rebounds. Kevin Love (22), Tristan Thompson (11), and George Hill (15) also racked up points in the double digits. Love also stood out for his 10 rebounds and Larry Nance Jr. for his 6. However, Golden State was just as solid offensively with Curry (33), Durant (26), Thompson (20), and Livingston (10) once again reaching double digits. Durant and Green both led the team with 9 and 8 rebounds, but Curry was close behind with 7. The former two also had 7 assists each, while Curry had 8.
What is Cleveland going to do? They’re behind by two games in the finals and it doesn’t look like this team is meshing well together. Luckily, LeBron was just put on the cover on NBA 2k19 so his year won’t be that bad. However, the Cavaliers are an interesting case study about how one man can’t be expected to win a game. It also goes to show why Michael Jordan will always be considered the king of basketball: he elevated the players around him on the Bulls, while some of the Cavs players speak about how difficult it is to play with LeBron.