Warriors take 2-0 series lead in NBA Finals

Paola Ditto
Giugno 6, 2017

That's the plan for the defending champions Sunday night and will be key if they want to even the best-of-seven series and look respectable after the Warriors whipped them 113-91 Thursday night.

But that wasn't enough.

The Warriors, on the other hand, have gotten key contributions from their four All-Stars: Curry, Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, as well as from players like Livingston, Andre Iguodala and Zaza Pachulia at times to set an National Basketball Association record with 14 straight postseason wins.

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) and guard Stephen Curry (30) celebrate during the second half of Game 2 of basketball's NBA Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, June 4, 2017. "We need to do better right now", James said. "So we're just trying to stay in the moment".

Kerr: "No, I'm a big believer that when you play really well, if you don't shoot well, but you play well, it's just a matter of time before the shot comes". "So (if) they continue to do that, which I have no doubt in my mind they will, we'll continue to follow their lead".

While the Warriors are looking strong they will no doubt be keen to keep their foot on the gas.

If Thompson's offensive game is back on track, it's going to be very hard for the Cavs to derail a Warriors team that has taken on the look of a juggernaut with their NBA-record 14th straight playoff win. Those numbers would be a formula for success against any other team, but the Cavs had no answer for Golden State's quickness.

Despite a similar final game differential to Game 1, the two games were actually radically different.

A triple-double means a player has recorded a double-digit number in three of five statistical categories: points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks. Kerr praised his shooting guard for his defense, ball handling and passing in Game 1, and compared Thompson to a baseball player who had gone 0-for-4, but was hitting line drives and starting to come out of a slump.

The hope within the organization - consistent with Kerr's intention - is that their coach endures the remaining games of the best-of-seven series and the team rewards him with a second championship in three years. "The game is too fresh". "We're going to have to be a lot smarter". "When you got great teammates like I do, who allow me to play with my emotions and allow me to be emotional when I'm talking to them, to use my emotions to the better of us, it's easy". "Much more physical today than we were in Game 1". Smith and Tristan Thompson were most noticeably dragging behind, but even Thompson made a couple decent contributions late in Game 2. Thirteen first-half turnovers by the Warriors ultimately became so what stats no one spoke about.

The Warriors overcame their mistakes.

LeBron James had 29 points, 11 rebounds and 14 assists to tie Magic Johnson's record with his eighth career Finals triple-double.

In the 2016 Finals against the Cavs, Curry shot just 40.3 percent from the field, while going 6-for-19 from the field and just 4-for-14 from beyond the arc in a Game 7 loss.

But even with James playing like that, Kevin Love tossing in 15 points and the Warriors committing 13 turnovers - more than triple the amount they had in all of Game 1 - Golden State still led 67-64 at halftime. Just as Golden State did in Game 1, the Warriors turned on the jets after the halftime break, outscoring the Cavaliers 35-24 in the third quarter - behind 12 points from Curry and nine from Durant - to give Golden State a 102-88 lead after three quarters that made the final 12 minutes of the game nearly moot.

"The talent on the floor in this series is just unbelievable", said Kerr, who returned to guide his team from the sideline after a six-week absence with back problems.

But on a night where Draymond Green's foul trouble sapped his usual impact and saddled him on the bench, Durant's two-way dominance may have been the game's most important factor.

"It was just great to be on the sidelines again", Kerr added.

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