Game 6: 24-second thoughts

VIDEO: Warriors ball movement wore down the Cavaliers defense.

24 — No Hollywood or recording industry celebs for this one. At Game 6 desperation time, Cavs pulled out their big gun in 19-year-old Marlana VanHoose. Blind since birth, the native of Denver, Ky. was undefeated when she sang the national anthem at University of Kentucky women’s basketball games. Her version on Tuesday night was the stirring, emotional call-to-duty the Quicken Loans Arena crowd and the Cavs needed.

23LeBron James in pre-game huddle before tip: “Ain’t no tomorrow.” Personally, I would have channeled John Belushi: “Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?”

22 — Size matters. For all the talk about the Warriors taking control of the series with small ball, whether or not there’s a Game 7 depends on how long Cleveland can pound inside with bigs and control the pace. No secrets: Get the biggest guy on the floor (Timofey Mozgov) the ball in the paint.

21 — On a night when the Cavs’ margin for error has practically vanished, they start out with six turnovers in the first seven minutes. Cleveland running down too much of the clock to make decisions, get off a shot. Now third shot clock violation already. Cleveland G.M. David Griffin could probably make a trade to get LeBron James some help in time between shots by the Cavs.

20 — This is what desperation looks like. First quarter Warriors 11 assists on 11 baskets and Cavs nine turnovers with just six FGs. It seemed the one thing Cleveland could not afford to do was let Golden State play from ahead.

19 — Cavs coach David Blatt keeps asking for more effort when he should actually be asking for more players.

18 — Helluva time for LeBron to be worried about the feelings of his teammates. Time to be Terminator, not Facilitator.

17 — Does nobody believe in going up strong to the basket for Cavs? Not even LeBron.

16 — There is one reason why the Cavs are even still in this game: Mozgov’s defense. Exhibit A: block on Draymond Green in low post.

15 — You have to love the enthusiasm and fire of Green. But if he’s going to hang onto Mozgov’s neck, the big guy has every right to put an elbow into his face.

14 — He had 15 points, eight rebounds, three assists in the first half. But it sure looked like LeBron might as well have played the first half from a La-Z-Boy. Was he saving himself for the 24 minutes to save the season?

13 — While Warriors keep moving and moving the ball, Cavs killing themselves by trying to do too much individually. There is not a single Cav who should be permitted to dribble the ball more than once except LeBron. And he’s got to go all the way to the hole.

12 — After Cavs briefly take the lead, Golden State comes back to rip off 7-0 spurt and there’s blood in the water. Cavs are gonna need a bigger boat.

11 — Doesn’t matter if James Jones didn’t catch the ball perfectly on inbounds pass. If you’re gonna be at the rim and miss dunks, you’re heading for summer.

10 — The on-court screamer with the microphone at The Q is standing a midcoast virtually begging the hometown fans to stand up and scream. But it seems they know reality when it smacks them right in the face and Warriors up by a dozen.

9 — For all that he’s done, as brilliantly as he’s played, LeBron and his somewhat passive approach to tonight are costing him a shot at becoming joining Jerry West (1969) as the second player ever from the losing team named MVP of The Finals.

— You want one more reason for the Cavs to worry? Steph Curry goes to bench for a pre-4th quarter rest with Warriors holding 70-58 lead.

7 — End third quarter, Warriors lead 73-61 and one word to describe Cavs: Spent.

6 — Just in case you haven’t filled out your MVP ballot yet, here’s Steph to bang in back-to-back 3s. But Iggy ties him for leading scorer with 25 points, five assists, five rebounds, two steals and all of that splendid work on LeBron. Oh yeah, and Draymond Green has a triple-double (14-10-10)

— Share the ball, share the rewards. Warriors put on the crowning touch with the kind of move-the-ball passing game that had them setting pace in NBA since opening night — 28 assists on 37 buckets.

4Been a while.

June 16, 1975:

No. 1 single U.S. — Sister Golden Hair, America.

No. 1 TV show — All In The Family.

3 — Can you top this? Steve Kerr posts 83-20 (.801) overall record and becomes first rookie coach to win NBA championship since Pat Riley in 1982.

2 — Andre Iguodala becomes first player who never started a regular season game to be named Finals MVP. Curry and Iggy become first pair of championship teammates to split regular season and Finals MVP awards since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Magic Johnson in 1980.

Iguodala: “I want to be Steph Curry when I grow up.”

1 — Wire-to-wire thoroughbreds:

American Pharoah.

Stephen Curry.

1A — Last Western Conference NBA champion not from California or Texas: Seattle SuperSonics, 1979.

 

10 Comments

  1. Indiana'sownLarryBird says:

    i thought the games were close and the Cavs hung in there the best they could they had there chances to win the series but the lack of depth and talent caught up with them the Warriors were deeper and more talented, and Blatt had some questionable??? coaching moves like Mozgoz in game 5 10 mins??? i understand the small ball but that 4th quarter in game 5 they had a chance but the Warriors were just on the boards and in the paint and the Cavs had no answer in the paint should of had Mozgoz in the game, they had the lead in the 4th, but Curry was to awesome.

  2. used to ball says:

    Kerr: I was handed a great team on a silver platter & I beat an undermanned team to win it all my first year! I’m sure glad I didn’t go to the Knicks!
    Warriors: We just beat an undermanned team to get our first championship in 40 years!
    Warriors botttom bench: We didn’t have to do anything because they were undermanned & we still got our rings!

    Blatt: I’m not supposed to be here my first year. I have no idea what i’m doing. We have more than 7 players?
    LeBron: Gimme me the ball cuz you guys can’t play & the coach can’t coach. I’m the best player on the planet!
    rest of Cavs: I don’t want the ball! Here you take it! Where’s LeBron? Give it to him, we may be tired but he’s not!

  3. Benjie says:

    Losers always winds up with there best. You lost to the mavs and Spurs with wade and bosh. So 2 out 6 final appearance is a record king James. Not as close as Michael Jordan 6 out of 6 . I think dwane wade carried the heat to 2006 championship with a clutch moment and consistency. So James stop making excuse and move on.

  4. harriethehawk says:

    I don’t think Lebron James should be ashamed for losing. He is still amazing. What other teams ever made it to the finals without 3 of their starters? I do think they need to make major changes over the summer and I still think Kyrie Irving is injury prone and is a key factor. Hope Lebron sticks around for the sake of his hometown fans.

  5. Pao says:

    I may have to disagree with your 1A: You totally forgot about Utah (1998)

    • Pao says:

      Oops, my bad, it was the Thunder who were the last WC champs not from CA or TX

      • Wording says:

        the wording is weird but what he meant was the last non-CA/TX team from the Western Conference that won the NBA Finals was the Seattle Supersonics

      • Piggy Azalea says:

        You guys don’t get it… “Last Western Conference NBA champion not from California or Texas” – meaning the last WCF champ that became the eventual NBA champion not from Texas (Spurs, Mavs, Rockets) nor California (Kings, Clipps, Lakers, Warriors)

  6. TC says:

    Love & Irving: Glad we lost; or the team might as well trade me…

  7. BBall fan says:

    1) As a bball fan, Finals would be much more exciting if no injuries problem in Cavs. Overall picture of Finals would be different. Two A-grade PG head-to-head (Curry may has little edge but not significant as in Delly’s case). LBJ vs Iggy. K Love vs Green. Im not a fan for both teams. But I guess Cavs probably win in 6.
    2) Iggy deserved the final mvp for his both ends on the floor. No doubt.