The Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors tipped off the NBA Finals a fourth consecutive year and though the defending champions are heavy favorites, Game 1 proved to be competitive for much of the night.
Stephen Curry scored 29 points for Golden State Warriors. "We're in the fight now".
James finished with 51 points and had the Cavaliers in position to win when his pass down low to George Hill drew a foul on Klay Thompson with 4.6 seconds left and Cleveland trailing 107-106. I looked over at 'Bron [LeBron James] and he looked like he was trying to call a timeout. For the first time publicly, James told Nichols that he did call management to ask them not to trade Irving. It's a huge play.
Said James: "I was outside the charge line, I stepped in, took the contact".
"You get the feeling that J.R. Smith thought they had the lead", said a stunned ABC play-by-play man Mike Breen.
"It has never been done, ever, in the history of the game". He played arguably the game of his life and still came up short against a team that's already beaten him twice in the NBA Finals. Just like you can review out of bounds calls.
"He didn't know the score!" said analyst Jeff Van Gundy.
Durant said he had a block-charge reversal in the regular season. "You know, he had a little floor". So I knew that.
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With just seconds remaining on the clock in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Smith pulled down a key offensive rebound but dribbled the basketball away from the hoop, effectively running out the clock and preventing the Cavaliers from stealing a stunning Game 1 upset. "I don't know what was going through J.R.'s head but he made a great rebound".
Smith's blunder allowed the Warriors to regain their composure and ultimately run out 124-114 winners following the overtime period.
"We got lucky", Kerr said. The only people I hear saying that are fans from other teams, which is natural. "I [had] seen the play happening". Luckily, Cavs guard JR Smith got the rebound a foot from the basket. Rohan Nadkarni discussed how Stephen Curry is even more fantastic of a shooter than we have really thought about. I'm pretty sure everybody didn't think I was going to shoot it over KD.
"They've been to the finals four years in a row, just like we have, for a reason".
The Cavs had every chance to make this a reality.
Some fans felt that James was too far from restricted area to have a review triggered. "At the end of the day it's a bunch of nothing".