Wed 10/06/2015 - 18:30 EDT

Warriors Must Play Desperate In Game 4 Of NBA Finals At Cavaliers

Warriors Must Play Desperate In Game 4 Of NBA Finals At Cavaliers
The Cleveland Cavaliers are now clearly in the Golden State Warriors' heads, shutting down that high-powered offense yet again in Game 3 of the NBA Finals. The Warriors have been in this position before however.

The Golden State Warriors, winners of a franchise-record and NBA-high 67 games during the regular season, say they aren’t worried about being in a 2-1 hole in the NBA Finals to LeBron James and the Cavaliers because they were also down 2-1 in the West semifinals against Memphis and won the next three games easily to eliminate the Grizzlies. One difference: the Grizzlies didn’t have LeBron. The Warriors haven’t lost three straight all season and are 3-point BetOnline favorites for Thursday’s Game 4. Golden State remains a slight -118 favorite on the series line.

What Happened In Game 3?

The Cavs led wire-to-wire in their 96-91 Game 3 victory, their first NBA Finals home win in franchise history. Cleveland also improved to an NBA-best 14-2 in the playoffs, including 7-1 at The Q. The Wine and Gold own the NBA’s best home record since Jan. 19 at 27-2 (.931), which includes a perfect 9-0 mark against the Western Conference.

The Cavs’ defense held the Warriors to 91 points on 36-90 (.400) shooting from the field in Game 3, including 37 points on 15-44 (.341) shooting in the first half. During the series, the Cavs have held the Warriors to a combined .414 shooting from the field, including .313 from beyond the arc. Cleveland also tallied nine steals and eight blocks in the victory and is averaging 10.0 steals and 5.3 blocks per game during the 2015 NBA Finals.

LeBron James finished with 40 points, 12 rebounds, eight assists and four steals. He’s the first player to hit all of those benchmarks in an NBA Finals game since steals were first recorded in 1973-74. James also set the NBA Finals record for most points in the first three games of a series. His 123 points are one more than Rick Barry scored in the first three games of the 1967 Finals (though Barry didn’t have the option of a 3-point shot)

Matthew Dellavedova, who averaged 4.8 points per game during the regular season, finished with 20 points, one shy of his career high. He’s totaled 29 points dating back to the start of the fourth quarter of Game 2. He also has helped shut down Steph Curry. The regular-season MVP was 5-for-12 shooting when guarded by Dellavedova but 5-for-6 against everyone else.

Injury Updates

The Cavaliers got good news on the injury front on Wednesday as both Iman Shumpert and Dellavedova are expected to play in Game 4. Shumpert got an MRI on his left shoulder and it revealed a bruise and no further structural damage, Cavs coach David Blatt said. Shumpert ran into a hard screen from Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green in the first half of the Cavs’ Game 3 victory Tuesday night. He left the floor but later returned and played with limited effectiveness with the shoulder, which he already dislocated earlier this season. Dellavedova spent Wednesday night in the Cleveland Clinic with severe dehydration.

Green says the Cavaliers are outfighting the Warriors through three games of the NBA Finals, and it’s showing in Golden State’s 2-1 series deficit.

“They’re playing like a team that’s desperate and needs something,” Green said Wednesday. “We’re playing like a team that’s not desperate and got something.” Of the loose balls secured in the series, Green said, “Who got the first? ‘Delly.’ The second? ‘Delly.'”

Even with a 36-point explosion in the fourth quarter Tuesday, Golden State still ended up scoring less than a point per possession (99.7 per 100) for the second consecutive game, just the third time all season that has happened to the Warriors. The others: a two-game stretch early in the season that included their first loss at Phoenix without Klay Thompson, and Games 2 and 3 of their playoff series against the Grizzlies, both defeats.

Category : Sports Betting News

Tag : 2015 nba finals , cavaliers warriors , lebron james , matthew dellavedova , nba finals game 4 , nba odds

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