Basketball

2016 NBA Finals Game 3 And Game 4 Analysis

Game 3 tipped off with a new look Cleveland team. A team that seemed to have more drive and more passion to pull this victory off. From the start Golden State just seemed like it ran out of energy, as the Cavs steam rolled right over them. What seemed to look like a one man team for the Cavs, turned a new leaf in game 3, accumulating more then 20 points from Kyrie Irving, Lebron James and JR Smith. Not only that the Cavs beat Golden State on almost every category on the stat sheet.

James told ESPN after the game “We finally got back to our game, It was a good flow, a collective team win.” Kyrie Irving posted a huge game when it was needed most, scoring 30 points and dishing out 8 assists. The Cavaliers lifted the intensity of there game, one of the oldest cliches in the book suggesting one team wanted a game more. Golden State from tip off just couldn’t buy a bucket, which led Lebron and his army to capitalize.

“We were soft,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said, “When you’re soft, you get beat on the glass and turn the ball over.” Cleveland hadn’t lost a home game this postseason, winning their game by and average of 22 points. The most notable question these finals by Warrior fans has been where is Steph Curry? He’s basically just looked like another guy on the court as opposed to a 2 time MVP. Curry has scored just 11, 18, and 19 points in the three games while converting no more than four shots from outside.

“I’m disappointed I didn’t do anything to help my team win tonight. It’s not about living up to a certain expectation other than the one that I have for myself, and I haven’t done that. I’ve got to be better.” Steph Curry said after the game. If the Warriors are to win game 4 they can’t show the fear they showed tonight, they played as a nervous team and the Cavs could smell blood.

Game 4 will be the ultimate decider for the Cavs and will basically be like Lebron said “Do or die”. To keep this series alive they’ll need to continue their intensity with or without Love, or lose and make it an almost impossible feat to come back from a 3-1 deficit.

Game 3 MVP Predictor: Kyrie Irving

Game 4 saw the awakening of Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, as the Warriors routed the Cavs 108-97 to take a 3-1 series lead. Golden States surge in the second half is what brought them home outscoring Cleveland 58-42. Reigning MVP Steph Curry finished the game with 38 points, six assists and seven three pointers, whilst his partner in crime Klay Thompson added 25 points and four threes.

Golden State also set a NBA Finals record by making 17 three pointers in a finals game, the record previously held by the San Antonio Spurs. Kyrie Irving once again showed up and scored a team-high 34 points for the Cavaliers, and LeBron James just missed a triple-double with 25 points, 13 rebounds and nine assists. Game 4 was close throughout, being a bucket for bucket battle. Golden State were struggling to grab the loose balls, James had only two points with 7:48 left in the second quarter and his team trailing 34-33.

King James may have been a non-factor in the scoring department at that point, but Irving gave his team a 42-41 lead with less than five minutes until halftime. Following Irving’s hot streak the Cavs managed to take the lead at the half 55-50. The third quarter saw Klay Thompson come out and drain three’s, but for me the game changer was in the defensive stops by Andrew Bogurt, and the hustle play of Anderson Varejao that turned the momentum of this game.

The defense was one thing, but Cleveland’s offense became stagnant in the early stages of the fourth with little ball movement. Golden State extended its advantage to 93-84 off a three by Harrison Barnes with less than six minutes left. With Cleveland failing to make a bucket the Steph Curry onslaught began and with four minutes left, Steph drained a three which was almost a dagger and pretty much put a seal on the game.

Game 5 heads back to Oracle Arena in Oakland and the Warriors are very favorable to close this series out and win there 2nd consecutive championship, and will almost be a dethroning of LeBron James. Will Curry become the new king? Game 5 Monday will be the decider of that.

Game 4 MVP Predictor: Steph Curry

*Image Source: Amazonaws.com

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