The Golden State Warriors got off to about as good of a start as they could’ve expected during the first two games of the NBA Finals. The Cleveland Cavaliers appeared to have Game 1 in hand, but the Warriors were able to get the game to overtime thanks to JR Smith’s blunder in the final seconds of regulation. Golden State ended up winning that contest by a 124-114 result and Game 2 ended up not being nearly as close down the stretch. Star guard Stephen Curry connected on an NBA Finals record nine threes in a 122-103 victory and that game was never really in doubt.
With the series shifting to Cleveland for Game 3, there were reasons for optimism concerning the Cavaliers. LeBron James had played extremely well during the first two games and nearly led the Cavaliers to a split. The Cavaliers did come out extremely strong and led by double digits on several occasions throughout Wednesday’s contest. Part of the reason for that was the fact that Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson were struggling shooting the basketball. However, Kevin Durant was able to keep the Warriors in the game and never nailed a huge three at the buzzer to end the first half.
Durant was truly the difference for the Warriors down the stretch and single-handedly willed his team to victory. The former NBA MVP scored 43 points on 15-of-23 shooting to go along with 13 rebounds and seven assists. Durant also hit six of his nine shots from beyond the arc and got just about any shot that he wanted. In fact, he drilled a three from way beyond the three-point line to extend Golden State’s lead to 106-100 in the final minute.
With Durant leading the Warriors one win closer to their second consecutive NBA championship, and their third title over the course of the last four seasons, it comes as no surprise that a number of his peers within the league are ready to see this Golden State roster break up with some specifically calling for the former Texas Longhorns standout to go elsewhere this summer once he becomes an NBA free agent.