What a way to start the finals. It took overtime to decide a winner. An overtime that could’ve possibly been avoided had the Cavaliers either kept the Warriors bench in check, or by more help from their own. Not to mention, losing Irving in that extra quarter.
LeBron James played a great game. He had 44 points, eight rebounds, and six assists. For any other player, this would be a staggering stat line, but this is where we expect James to be stats wise. We all know that when he scores big and gets double digit assists, it could mark trouble for the opposing team. The Cavs are going to need others to step up if they want a shot at winning Game 2. They will also need to clean up the three point shooting. Shooting 9-31 will not be acceptable, and the Warriors are team that’ll take advantage of poor shooting.
The Warriors bench was a huge difference in this game. Andre Iguodala in specific was a crucial player coming off that bench. Iguodala scored 15 points (which was nearly half) of the Warriors 34 bench points. Although LBJ is a tough guy to cover, Iguodala did a good job of it. LeBron will score on the best of the NBA defenders, but like I said, the Warriors have accepted the fact that LeBron will score a lot. If the supporting cast of the Warriors can play good offense like they did, and certainly defensively, they’ll be in good shape to take this series.
This was a great game to watch. The stat line suggests it was typical game. I mentioned LBJ’s stat line, Iguodala scored big off the bench and the Splash Brothers combined for 47 points. There are going to be three things each team needs to address going into Game 2.
The Warriors will have to get going early, as they ended the first quarter down ten. They’re mistaken if they think they can overcome that everytime. They did have 12 turnovers, and looked sloppy in that slow start, you can’t win when you give the ball away. The last thing for the Warriors is a continual one, they will have to continue to keep James’ assists numbers down. If they allow them to go up, they have to contain his scoring.
The Cavaliers will obviously need help from their bench, J.R. Smith was the only bench player to score and it was a mere nine points. Kyrie Irving could possibly be out for Game 2, which gives Matthew Dellavedova the starting gig. If the Cavs bench doesn’t step up, this series could be over quick. They will also need to capitalize on turnovers, they forced 12 and only had ten points off of them. They lost by eight, so more points there could’ve avoided the extra minutes, which means Irving doesn’t get hurt. They need to move the ball when James does go to the bench. Late in the fourth when LBJ was taking a breather, they kept trying isolation plays, which wasn’t as successful as planned.