The sun came up the East today in Cleveland, but the gloom did not burn off like the morning fog. No Friday has ever felt like the one the poor folks in Cleveland had to endure. After being one shot away from a Game 1 victory, after watching Kyrie Irving do a little of everything — nothing bigger than his block of Stephen Curry’s layup attempt with 25 seconds left in regulation — after getting almost nothing from their bench yet
You don’t need to look at the MRI on Kyrie Irving’s knee to know the Cleveland Cavaliers are in trouble. Just look at the boxscore. In Game 1 of the NBA Finals, Irving was better than anyone could have imagined. Bothered by a nagging sore left knee since Cleveland’s first-round series win over Boston, Irving clearly benefited from the eight-day layoff following the conference finals and rediscovered his All-Star form. Irving collected 23 points, seven rebounds and six assists in nearly 44 minutes,
OAKLAND — It was all right there for LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Fourth quarter. Tie score. Twenty-four seconds on the clock. The Cavaliers had the ball and a gift-wrapped chance to steal Game 1 of the NBA Finals on the road. And they had James, of course, the greatest force in the game, one who already had went off for 42 points, the most he had ever scored in a Finals game. The consensus was that James and the underdog
After a one-week wait, the NBA Finals are here. But that’s nowhere near as long as these teams have been waiting for a championship. For the Golden State Warriors, it has been 40 years since Rick Barry led them to what many believe is the greatest upset in NBA Finals history, a four-game sweep of the Washington Bullets in 1975. For the Cleveland Cavaliers, it has been, well, forever. The Cavaliers entered the NBA in 1970 and didn’t even make the Finals
What were you doing on May 25, 1975? If you are younger than 40, you weren’t doing anything because you weren’t born yet. Or at best, you were 9 days old. If your name is Lauryn Hill, you were being born that day. If you were a Democrat, you were a year and a half away from having a peanut farmer from Georgia elected President of the United States. If you were a Republican, you were supporting the only person in U.S.
Stephen Curry has a legitimate chance to go down as the greatest shooter in NBA playoff history. With just two days before the Golden State-Cleveland NBA Finals finally begins, an appreciation of Curry’s shooting stroke — and the changing landscape of how offenses emphasize the three — point to Curry having a chance to at least be part of an elite playoff performance list. The 27-year-old MVP ideally will be playing in many more postseasons over the course of his career and should be
As we count down to the start of NBA Finals, there are plenty of things to focus on: LeBron James building his legacy (he is no Jerry West), the battle of rookie head coaches Steve Kerr and David Blatt, the experience issue when it comes to having played in monster games before, be they NBA playoff games or FIBA tournaments (don’t forget that Steph Curry and Klay Thompson were members of Team USA last summer). But remember something that coaches always
See that guy? That white silhouette inside the red and blue? That’s Jerry West. He’s the NBA logo and has been since 1969, when he was still playing. Jerry West’s nickname was “Mr. Clutch.” Former Boston Celtics radio announcer Johnny Most, who disliked every player not wearing green and white, used to call him “Gentleman Jerry.” To my knowledge, Jerry West and Julius Erving are the only visiting players who ever received polite applause upon entering the lion’s den known as Boston