The Golden State Warriors took game one in overtime against the Cleveland Cavaliers, winning 108-100 after Lebron James and Iman Shumpert failed to win the game in regulation in the last seconds of the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers went ice cold in overtime, scoring only 2 points when the game was already decided in the Warriors favor. To make matters worse, Kyrie Irving injured his already boggled knee, and was forced to leave the game, clearly frustrated and disappointed. If he is out for more than one game, Cleveland’s title dreams may already be shattered.
The game started well for the Cavaliers, as Lebron James came out assertive from the tip-off, scoring 8 of Cleveland’s 10 first points. The Cavaliers led by as much as 14 points, and held on to a 10 point lead at the end of the first quarter (19-29). With James on the bench at the beginning of the second quarter, the Warriors took advantage. They went on a big run, fueled by a couple of Cleveland turnovers, limiting them to only 7 points in the first 9 minutes of the quarter. James and Smith answered for the Cavs, resulting in a 51-48 lead at the half. James led his team in dominant fashion, recording 19 points on 16 shots, 3 assists and 3 rebounds. Stephen Curry had an efficient first half, scoring 14 points while going 2-of-3 from behind the arc.
Neither team was able to make a big run in the second half, as the game stayed close until the final buzzer of regulation. The 5 minutes of overtime proved too much for the Cavaliers, as they went 0-for-8 from the field with 3 turnovers. James finished the game with 44 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists and was helped by Irving who added 23 points and 4 steals before being forced to leave the game injured. The Warriors had 5 players in double figures, led by Curry’s 26 points and 8 assists.
The bench was the biggest difference in this game, as the Cavaliers’ reserves were outscored 34 to 6. Cleveland was able to attack the offensive boards, as they have been doing all season long, but without much results as the Warriors held them to only 6 second chance points.
James will need more help from his teammates if they want to steal a game in Oracle Arena, and to make matters worse, he will probably be without Irving to carry the load. James attempted 38 field goal attempts, very uncharacteristic for him, but if nobody else steps up, he might be forced to take even more shots in game 2 for Cleveland to have a chance. Game 2 will be played on Monday at 11 AM AEST.