It took overtime to split these two teams in Game 1 of the NBA series and it may be that we are looking at a lengthy series to determine the outcome of this one. In the end, the Warriors were able to rise to another level while the Cavaliers looked to be a bit tired at the end of regulation time. Most people were expecting the Warriors to triumph at home, so there wasn’t a real shock in this game, but there is no doubt that this is a series that could run and run. Of course, that could all change by the end of Game 2 but this was a pulsating encounter that managed to live up to the hype and expectations that were placed on the game.
Cleveland Cavaliers 100 – Golden State Warriors 108
One man who certainly lived up to the hype was LeBron James, offering 44 points and being the dominant offensive player for this team, taking 38 of the overall 94 shots that the Cavaliers took. LeBron was the player continually taking the fight to the Warriors but even then, he fell short in winning the tie. It would be fair to say that LeBron has shot poorly from the arc all season, and the first half of Game 1 was evident of this.
Mind you, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson were slow at getting off the mark in the game, and the Warriors trailed in the opening quarter. Curry started to up the gears in the second quarter and Thompson provided 16 points. There was a lot to be said for the squad of the Warriors, with Andre Iguodala playing a strong role at both ends of the court, offering up 15 points and trying to contain James as best he could.
It was a pulsating and exciting fourth quarter
At the start of the fourth quarter, the game was tied and the lead changed hand four times. The Cavs were up by four and the Warriors led by 6 and it came down to one final shot, with Iman Shumpert missing a very late shot which would have clinched the game. As it was, the game went into overtime, and whether it was a psychological block after that near miss, or the fact that their legs had gone from putting in so much effort to contain the leading NBA side of the year but the Cavs were not in the running in overtime. With Kyrie Irving liming in the final quarter, the pain of loss was compounded for the Cavaliers and they will be looking to bounce back as quickly as possible in Game 2, but they know it will be a difficult task. Mind you, they performed well in most of the Eastern Conference Finals without Irving, and there is no reason why they cannot make the most of their time without him in the NBA Finals.
Game 2 takes place on Saturday night and with the Warriors at home once again, they have a great chance of taking a strong lead to Cleveland. The Cavaliers know that they need an away win at some point and Saturday represents their next, and therefore best, chance to grab it. It’s already shaping up to be a cracker.