The first game of the NBA went into overtime where the Golden State Warriors against the Cleveland Cavaliers 124-114. The Warriors ran away in overtime but the focus will be on the late scuffle which got forward Tristan Thompson tossed from the game.
LeBron James scored a game-high 51 points in the first game of the series yet it wasn’t enough to topple the Warriors. James and the Cavs did force overtime which was much closer than anyone, including me predicted. I did expect LeBron to put up a fight which is why the game was close for the most part.
Stephen Curry scored a team-high 29 points, 9 assists and grabbed 6 rebounds in the win. Cleveland played him well for the most part but when he got isolation against Love, he was scoring. The NBA Finals has turned into an isolation bloodbath. On the other side, LeBron kept going after Curry over and over. That didn’t always yield into points but it is the best match-up because James can take Curry into the paint and make a layup over him.
Let’s get into the topic that everyone is going to talk about. Tristan Thompson throw a shoulder and elbow at Shaun Livingston because he took exception to a shot he took late in the game with the game out of reach. Thompson apparently forgot that the shot clock was still running and Livingston had to shoot it. The Warriors took exception to Thompson’s dirty play which got him tossed out right away.
Thompson should have automatically have been led of the floor but wasn’t the case. Instead he started arguing with Draymond and shoved the ball into his chest. I expect Thompson to get suspended because of that. If he does get suspended, the Cavs lose their best rebounder and shot blocker.
The Final score was not indicative of how close the game was. Cavs lost by double digits but if it wasn’t for the flagrant foul, the Cavs would have only lost by 8.
The Cavaliers should be happy that they were competing with the Warriors for all four quarters. Nobody thought they would be able to. Yet, LeBron once again was able to do the impossible. He won’t score 50 or more every game but he won’t need to. The Cavs tend to play better in the NBA Finals after the first couple of games and that’s because they can watch film and figure out a strategy to get better shots and play better defense.
The Warriors on the other hand looked sloppy. They made a couple of runs in the game but couldn’t blow the game open. They missed open shots and had a bunch of turnovers that stopped their momentum. Steve Kerr should be feeling great because the Warriors played awful yet they were still able to win.
If this is how the NBA Finals are going to be, I’m all in. Watching James carry this Cavs team is fun because that means he will have to score 40 or more every game to give them a chance and we all know he will do exactly that.