Cavs Drubbed by the Dubs in Game 1
Game 1 of the 2017 NBA Finals ends in a one-sided 113-91 blowout for the Golden State Warriors. The Kevin Durant led Warriors were never at risk of forfeiting their lead, despite having it cut to 8 on three occasions. This series opener was decided soon after it began. Once the opening jitters were behind them, the Warriors made light work of the visiting Cavaliers and eventually put Game 1 behind them as well.
Thanks to a heavy dose of Durant brilliance, the Warriors were able to put the Cavaliers away early in the second quarter. Whether Durant is willing to admit it, he joined the talented Warriors this past off-season to play on the grand stage. On this night, Durant showed a flare for the spotlight and even impressed his own coach. When asked about Durant's performance after the win, Interim Head Coach Mike Brown (filling in for Steve Kerr) stated, "When KD had an opportunity, he went down hill and it worked out well... He was a presence mentally and physically. He was locked in."
The record setting Warriors continued their historic run by adding a turnover record to their near flawless résumé. By halftime the assist to turnover ratio was 20 assists to just 1 turnover. Golden State maintained this disciplined, unselfish play and finished the game with 31 assists while only committing 4 turnovers. The 4 Warriors turnovers tied a record for fewest turnovers in an NBA Finals game.
In contrast, LeBron James doubled the Warriors mark and committed eight turnovers on his own.
Four-time NBA scoring champ Kevin Durant, was in was in rare playoff form, scoring 38 points on 14-26 field goals. To Coach Brown's earlier point about Durant's focus, Durant was clearly locked in from the opening tip. Despite nursing an 18-point lead, Durant could be seen yelling, "Come on!" to teammate Stephen Curry in response to Curry committing a foul on J.R. Smith after getting beat on an off-ball basket cut.
Coach Mike Brown explained his view of the Warriors' potential areas of improvement, they included: improving shooting accuracy and rotating defensively to prevent open jump shots. Coach Brown was quick to acknowledge that perimeter shooting was not his main concern. However, the several uncontested point blank misses were problematic.
A combination of Curry's sharpshooting, Durant's dribble penetration, Draymond Green's energy, and the hustle and pace of the Warriors reserves, all contributed to the Game 1 blowout. Golden State was the first team to enter Game 1 of the Finals with a 12-0 playoff record. This drubbing of the Cavs extends that streak to 13.