Cavs ignore last year's comeback after another 0-2 hole

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant center defends a shot by Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love during the second half of Game 2 of basketball's NBA Finals in Oakland Calif. Sunday
Ezra Shaw Pool
Author

08 June, 2017

Smiling, cracking jokes and looking more comfortable than he has in recent weeks, Kerr declared himself ready to be back on the bench for Sunday night's Game 2 against the Cleveland Cavaliers. "Especially with Draymond out", coach Steve Kerr said.

Curry goofs around at practice and in pregame warm-ups, even in the layup line. Before the game, the National Basketball Coaches Association presented its annual Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award to co-winners Al Attles, who led the Warriors to their first West Coast championship in 1975, and Hubie Brown, a Hall of Fame honoree in 2005.

"They're a different team", James said of the current edition of the Warriors.

On Sunday, Curry had a bad first half. "I think we're moving the ball great, we're shooting the ball at a high clip and our defense has been unbelievable".

Kerr missed that memo.

Tristan Thompson played fewer minutes for the Cavs, with Iman Shumpert seeing more time to help ease the defensive load on James guarding Durant. "And 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 for us, it's easy". They went to a smaller lineup that contributed to Golden State committing 20 turnovers a game after tying a Finals record with four. Curry danced around James before eventually laying one in. James had little help as Love got there late.

Curry, Durant lead Warriors to 2-0 lead with 132-113 rout
James said after Sunday's loss he is no worse for wear, that it wasn't anything some food and wine couldn't remedy. Irving has struggled through two games and not been efficient, and a lot of that is due to Thompson.

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By comparison, unemployment in April past year was 11.2 percent, while back in December 2013 only 6.2 percent were unemployed. Gross domestic product grew 1 percent from the fourth quarter of 2016, when the economy shrank 0.5 percent.

Durant led the Warriors with 33 points, five blocks and 13 rebounds, and he hit four of his eight 3-point attempts. Golden State has been punishing Cleveland in transition, and the way the Warriors have blown open the first two games by scoring in bunches hasn't just taken a physical toll. He refused to hold a postgame press conference after Game 2, instead speaking to reporters in a scrum inside Cleveland's locker room. No one else has more than two. Nice try with the paste-on beard, Steph, but it only makes you look younger. James downplayed his impact on Cleveland's strategy.

The Warriors blocked seven shots, including five by Durant, who became just the third player since 1984 to have a 30-point, 10-rebound, five-block game in the NBA Finals. Get your coats, party's over.

"We have a huge hurdle to get over tomorrow", Warriors guard Stephen Curry said. It started with getting to the basket early and taking good shots. Officially. At least one of those free throws doesn't count, because it banged the rim.

The NBA has put a salary cap in place to make it hard to form superteams like the Warriors, and KD's move was only possible because of a couple of big fluke things (Curry's ankle issues when he signed his last contract, keeping his price down, and the spike in the salary cap due to the new television deal). You've got to play every game like you're down. Hey, when you have a 2-0 series lead, you don't gloat and crow and poke the King with a stick.

As Kerr walked onto the court, he was met with a standing ovation from the fans and hugs from Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue and Cavaliers forward LeBron James. He carved out an all-star career from being a second-round draft pick and is willing to take on whoever he has to.

Dominating like no team ever has in the postseason, the Warriors look capable of anything - except another NBA Finals collapse.


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