The Golden State Warriors know what it feels like to be down early in a series. Earlier in this playoffs, the Warriors were down 2-1 to the Memphis Grizzlies. The Warriors collected as a group, stuck together, and won three consecutive games to end the series in six. They relied on efficiency on both sides of the court, and that is what the Cavaliers are testing.
The Warriors live and die on the three point line. Throughout this series, the Cavaliers have pressured the Warriors on the perimeter and forced the Warriors to take tough, low percentage shots. Matthew Dellavedova has been breaking screens and never leaves Steph Curry alone. Dellavedova always has a hand in Curry’s face and it is saving the Cavaliers. Curry is shooting 11-34 from the three point line throughout the Finals. Look at these shooting numbers.
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) June 11, 2015
Even though Golden State is struggling, they only lost Games 2 and 3 by a combined 3.5 points. LeBron James has been playing out of his mind averaging 41 points, 12 rebounds, and 8.3 assists per game throughout the 2015 NBA Finals. The Cavaliers held the Warriors to less then 100 points in Games 2 and 3 which is very un-Warriors like. Defense wins championships, and the Cavaliers have the better defense.
The Warriors came together when they looked their worst. In the third quarter of Game 3, it looked as if the Warriors had given up being down 20 points. Quicken Loans Arena was shaking as the Warriors called a timeout. The Warriors came together and brought that lead down to one. Steph Curry found his shooting rhythm scoring 24 out of his 27 points in the second half. He shot 5-8 from the three point line in the fourth quarter, but wasn’t enough to bring the Warriors to victory.
Post-game Curry said:
“I think I found something when it comes to how I’m going to be able to attack their pick-and-rolls and even certain iso situations,”
“I’ll keep that in the memory bank going into Game 4, and hopefully it has a trickle over effect into the first quarter of the next game.”
If Steph Curry is cold from the three point line and the Warriors only lose by a combined 3.5 points, there isn’t much concern. He found his three point shot in the fourth quarter and showed why he was named the league MVP. Curry was creating his own shot, shooting over the defense, and looked to have solved the Cavaliers defense. Game 4 will prove how serious of a contender Golden State is.
When the Warriors were down 2-1 in the Western Conference semi-finals, they beat the Grizzlies 101-84 in Game 4. They shot 42.4% from behind the arc led by Steph Curry’s 33 points. They found their swagger and played Warriors basketball.
The Warriors offensive system has been working all season and the team has the shooters to fit the system. They have played with confidence all season and believed in Steve Kerr’s system. The Warriors need to re-group and avoid their first three game losing streak for the first time this season. Down 2-1, the Warriors know the title isn’t out of reach.
All statistics courtesy of ESPN.com