And just like that “Thy Land was Defended”
I have mixed emotions after Game 4. If you’re a fan of defense or at least balanced basketball well more than likely you didn’t like this game with all the great scoring that was being done, but Game 4 had it all. We saw Cleveland break multiple records. LeBron surpassed a couple of legends on Friday night as well and now the Cavaliers head back to Oracle in what is going to be a tough game to come out of victorious.
No sweep for the Cavaliers and for the Warriors there will be no perfect post-season when it comes to 16-0. Even though the Cavs were up by double digits the whole game it was still similar to riding a roller coaster. The Cavs came out on fire dropping a scorching 49-points in the first quarter which were the most points scored in any quarter of a Finals game. I personally believe it was more than them accepting that they could be swept at home, but I think after the Game 3 meltdown where the Cavs let it slip away at the end I think when Steph Curry squatted on the court as he was “pooping” on their home court really set an alarm off for the Cavs. Why now? I get that they were down 3-1 last year and we saw how that ended, but this isn’t the same Warriors team from last season. Kevin Durant is an animal! He’s scored 30 points or more in each game of the Finals so far, but that’s one of many mixed emotions when it comes to the Cavs is why now when their backs are going to remain against the wall till this series is over.
The scoring wouldn’t slow down for the Cavs as they closed out the half with 86 points. The most points in a half in Finals history, and just like that we saw 154 points between both teams (most in NBA Finals history) The score and stats alone resemble a full game stat sheet for the Cavs. The Warriors failed to keep up, but the first quarter really set the tone for this game. The Warriors found themselves in foul trouble early, and it showed when Golden State hesitated on the defensive side of the ball. Curry had a bad shooting night (14 points 4-for-13 FG). Klay Thompson also struggled (13 points 4-for-11 FG) and every time I looked for him on my screen Kyrie had him on skates. Draymond Green (16 points 6-for-16) had some bizarre calls and technical’s which made the game un-enjoyable at times. Kevin Durant (35 points 9-for-22 FG) remained hot, and his argument with Lebron in the 3rd quarter over a flagrant foul called on Kevin Love was a great moment in the game.
The big 3 combined for 94 points for the Cavs, but out of 137 points that 43 points from the bench is scary if you’re the Cavs and knowing you have to go back to Oracle arena in yet another elimination game. Lebron James (31 points, 10 rebound, 10 assists) was an absolute monster as he passed Magic Johnson for most triple-doubles in NBA Finals history. Lebron also passed up Michael Jordan for third all-time on the list for most points scored in Finals history. Kyrie Irving was playing like a possessed man (40 points 15-for-27 FG) adding 7 threes, and the Cavs are going to need him play similar in Game 5 on the road. Kevin Love ( 23 points 7-for-14 FG, 6-for-8 3-point land). The rest of the team was hard to watch. J.R. Smith (15 points) finally had a good game, and his nearly half court shot blew the roof off at the Q. Tristan Thompson isn’t a factor, Iman Shumpert finally got fired up, but it was after Zaza Pachulia swung for his family jewels, which by the way, how the hell was he not suspended after the dirty play was reviewed?
The officiating was horrible from Draymond’s double technical that was really one technical, because it turned out that the first one was addressed to Steve Kerr, but was announced the opposite. It was a mess and confusing, but I’ll leave it at that. There’s hope to believe that Game 5 is going to be another dog fight, yet again the Warriors might come out and surpass 50 points in the first quarter just to set the tone.