Friday, June 2, 2017

NBA: Warriors blow by Cavaliers behind Durant-Curry scoring spree

That 1-2 punch for the Golden State Warriors served up an emphatic blow to open the NBA finals.

Kevin Durant scored 23 of his 38 points in the 1st half and Steph Curry knocked down 4 triples in the 3rd quarter en route to 28 points, as the Warriors trounced the Cleveland Cavaliers 113-91 in Game 1 of their championship series on Thursday (Friday, Manila time).
"We could be a lot better than we were tonight," said Durant, who also finished with 8 rebounds and 8 assists without a turnover in 38 minutes.

It was competitive until halftime, with the Warriors up 60-52.

After the break, when Curry started to get hot and the Cavaliers had little offensive options other than to look for LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, that was when matters quickly went sideways for the defending champions.

It was 80-68 with 3 minutes left in the 3rd, but the Warriors ended the quarter with a 13-1 run highlighted by a long Curry 3-pointer with a hand in his face.

"There's no time to be disappointed. We're focused on the next game," said Irving, who scored 24 points.

The Warriors matched an NBA Finals one-game record with only four turnovers while the Cavaliers made 20, eight of them by superstar LeBron James and six of those in the second quarter alone.

Durant, seeking his first NBA crown after leaving Oklahoma City for Golden State last July, hit 14-of-26 from the floor and helped frustrate James, who finished with 28 points on 9-of-20 shooting with 15 rebounds and eight assists in the first game of his seventh consecutive finals.

Golden State, trying to become the first unbeaten playoff champion, matched the record 13-game post-season win streak set by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1988 and 1989 and matched by the Cavaliers this year.

The Warriors made 12 steals to none by Cleveland.

Andre Iguodala's 3-pointer to end the first quarter gave the Warriors a 35-30 lead and Golden State stretched it to 60-52 at half-time. — With a report from Jim Slater, Agence France-Presse