CLEVELAND-The Golden State Warriors know they will be in hostile territory at the Quicken Loans Arena on Wednesday when the National Basketball Association final resumes, but things started ridiculously early.
If the 2017 NBA Finals is going to be anything of a decent series, the Cleveland Cavaliers need to get on the board. After they arrived in Cleveland ahead of Game 3, which begins at 6 p.m. today and airs on ABC, two-time MVP Stephen Curry reminisced on bad memories.
Things turned out OK for the Cavs in 2016.
Now the series shifts back to Cleveland for Game 3 on Wednesday night, with the Cavaliers trying to find a way to get themselves back into this series and the Warriors knowing that two more wins this week will get them another title.
"Defensively, (Irving) has to do a lot more", Lue said.
After all, you know the traditional Oakland saying: "Potna, let's go half on a sack" it goes, right?
"He really plays for his teammates", Warriors general manager Bob Myers said before Game 2.
"We made that mistake by circling 73 and worrying about the wrong thing before", Green said Tuesday, suggesting the Warriors might've lost some focus before last year's playoffs started.
They proceeded to lose four of the last five Finals games, and the series, collapsing as much under the weight of their own shortcomings as the relentlessness and increasing swagger of the Cavaliers. Durant replaced Harrison Barnes in the Golden State lineup.
The Cavaliers have pulled a Game 3 finals upset at their home Quicken Loans Arena in back-to-back years, beating the Warriors 96-91 as 2-point underdogs in 2015 and prevailing 120-90 as 1.5-point underdogs last year. 'We're young, healthy, and playing a game we love'.
"I think that was kind of the point of the season where we started doing a better job of blending their talent", Kerr said.
"We definitely have a sense of what they're capable of", Love said. I don't remember what the final score was, but it wasn't close. No unlikely heroes emerged for the Cavaliers, and four candidates - J.R. Smith, Channing Frye, Deron Williams and Iman Shumpert - combined to go 2 for 18 from the field in Game 2. He'll likely explode in Game 3 or Game 4, because that's who he is.
Golden State coach Steve Kerr knows his team won the first two games by an average of 20.5 points but he hasn't forgotten what occurred last season. I don't think either is out here playing for the title of best player in the world. I feel like I'm on a dating show. I'm confident that we can play that way, and we did it previous year. "She told me every time I touch it, shoot it".
"My confidence has never dwindled, lacked, chipped, nothing". He apparently learned from his mistakes of a year ago, when his firebrand ways blazed so hot he found himself suspended for Game 5. Cleveland dropped the first two games of last year's Finals by 48 points before coming alive, and pro sports bettor Mike Scalleat expects a similar response by the Cavaliers in Game 3.
Draymond Green believes comparisons between his Golden State Warriors and great National Basketball Association (NBA) teams of the past are pointless because of changes in the rules and the impossibility of head-to-head battles.
"It's something I am accustomed to", James said.
"Both of them, to me, it seemed like it's personal for both of them. But you hate to continue to put yourself in these positions".
The Warriors have a chance at becoming the first National Basketball Association team to run the table in the playoffs, and go 16-0. With a win in Game 3 they would pass the 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins for the most consecutive playoff wins by any major professional sports team. No NBA team has overcome a 3-0 series deficit in any round. That's a huge improvement over where the Warriors were past year.
"We can learn how thin the line is between success and failure", Curry said. "That's what we want".
'We're anxious about the series right now, ' he told reporters. We want 15-0. That's what we want. It's so hard to do. The series shifts to Cleveland, where Golden State had a similar situation previous year. "That's the important lesson, not any historical benchmarks".