Kevin Durant and the Golden State Warriors proved to be too much to handle for the Cleveland Cavaliers after an 113-91 victory in Game 1 of the NBA Finals 2017. Durant led the Warriors with 38 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists on 53.8 percent shooting from the field and 50 percent from beyond the arc.
The trilogy match between the Cavaliers and the Warriors finally started. Earlier in the game, both teams established an impressive performance on both ends of the floor. However, the Warriors showed why they are the top favorite to win the title after ending the first half with an eight-point lead.
Their dominance continued in the third quarter, outscoring the Cavaliers 33-20. Cleveland didn’t find a way to answer and pull out their starters in the final minutes of the game. The Warriors only shot 42.5 percent from the field but still finished the game with a 22-point lead.
NBA Finals 2017: LeBron James vs Kevin Durant
Kevin Durant looked impressive in his first Finals game with the Warriors, dropping 23 points in the first half alone and committed zero turnovers throughout the game. He also played very well on the defensive end, guarding Cavaliers superstar LeBron James, who finished the game with 28 points, 15 rebounds, and eight assists. Durant doesn’t have too much concern with his one-on-one battle against “The King.”
“I try not to predetermine anything,” Durant said, according to NBA TV on Twitter. “Just go out there and hoop. We can be a lot better than we were tonight. It’s not about me. He’s going to do what he does. He’s LeBron James. You guys know what he can do. I just try to play as hard as I can and not make it about a matchup. It’s about us. It’s about the Golden State Warriors versus the Cleveland Cavaliers.”
It was the second time Durant and James faced each other in the NBA Finals. They first face-off was in 2012 NBA Finals when James’ Miami Heat defeated Durant’s Oklahoma City Thunder. However, as of now, Durant is playing alongside a two-time MVP (Stephen Curry) and NBA All-Stars (Draymond Green and Klay Thompson).
Defense still a major concern for Cavs
The Cavs’ defense looked sluggish from the beginning until the end of the game. They also finished the game with 20 turnovers. The Warriors, who only shot 42.5 percent from the field, took advantage and had series of easy shots. The Cavaliers managed to limit the production of Thompson and Green, who only combined for 15 points.
However, Durant and Curry remain unstoppable on the offensive end, posting 38 points and 28 points, respectively. If the Cavaliers don’t make a huge adjustment in Game 2, they may end up going home with a 2-0 deficit. Game 2 of the NBA Finals 2017 will be on Sunday night at the Oracle Arena.
Photo courtesy: Keith Allison/Flickr