15 Things We Learned From Game 3 Of The NBA Finals

15 Things We Learned From Game 3 Of The NBA Finals

  1. Kevin Love is the dry handjob of the NBA; sure, sometimes it’ll get the job done, but nobody is happy about it.
  2. Without the aforementioned chafing, the Cavaliers’ spacing gives the much-smaller Warriors fits. Even while shooting a good, but not unrepeatable, percentage (just over 50 overall) the Cavs’ control of the paint and offensive rebounding can overwhelm the “Splash Brothers.”
  3. Cavs have turned this series into a prison rules battle. And no, I’m not just referring to JR Smith. Curry is bumped, shoved, elbowed and grabbed on seemingly every possession.
  4. Speaking of Curry, the beating he took from Steven Adams closeouts and the barrage of Cavalier “picks” has seriously gotten to him. The MVP looks tentative, bracing for impact after most shots; while the officials have seemingly forgotten the concept of protecting the shooter’s landing.
  5. LeBron James is clearly the most valuable player on Earth, and it is not even close. LeBron’s versatility, defense, playmaking, and now even his…gasp…jump shooting, have made the two-time champion almost undefendable.
  6. LeBron’s greatest attribute, however, is his decision making. Last night, James, in his best role as the primary ball handler, dissected the Warrior’s defense on his way to another near triple double.
  7. Even with the Warrior bigs on the floor, the lane was wide open like Sasha Grey’s legs. James, Irving, Smith, and even Thompson, were able to put the ball on the floor and get to the rack. The Bogut block bonanza of game two seemed a distant memory by the second half.
  8. Richard Jefferson, who I remember in New Jersey with Vince Carter back when my life’s stresses revolved around Pok√©mon cards, is apparently an ageless wonder. Jefferson, filling for Kevin “camped in the corner” Love, sparked the early Cleveland run. A reliable 3-point shooter and surprisingly athletic finisher, Jefferson will likely remain a starter.
  9. The “Splash Brothers,” though incredible shooters, are as worthless as, well, Kevin Love when their shots aren’t falling. Thompson at least provides decent man defense on the other end of the floor, but Curry is almost unwatchable defending players of superior size and athleticism.
  10. Steve Kerr struggles immensely to motivate his supposed “greatest team of all time” for Game 3s. Again, the Warriors looked largely lifeless, mirroring losses to Houston and OKC in their respective third matchups. Aside from a brief second quarter run, last night seemed like an unending Monday morning for the team from Oakland.
  11. The Cavs, win or lose, will be incredible next season. The main reason here is the immense trade chip that should remain on the bench: Kevin Love. With his absurd career numbers pre-Cleveland (25-15 in Minnesota), youth, and reasonable extension in the face of a cap explosion, Love will command a hefty price.
  12. That “hefty price” should be Blake Griffin. Sounds crazy, right? Think about it for a second. The Clippers are stuck in mid-round purgatory in the West, with OKC, Golden State, and San Antonio entrenched as powers for the foreseeable future. Griffin and Deandre Jordan simply cannot coexist, clogging the lane and leaving the aging Clippers without any semblance of outside shooting or spacing. Enter Love, a forty percent 3-point shooter, seemingly unwilling to move out of the corner, spacing the floor and regularly wide open for kick outs. The Cavs get the third scorer they desperately need, more toughness inside, and are already stocked with shooters. Everybody wins. Not to mention CP and Blake supposedly despise each other.
  13. Golden State’s home court advantage is monumental. Both teams are shells of themselves on the road, or at least have done their best 76ers impression while in their opponents’ buildings. With four (if necessary) games to go, and a 2-1 lead, Golden State’s comfort of home for a possible Game 7 looms large.
  14. The Warriors need to let Barnes and Ezeli walk, using the saved funds to lure a ring-hungry veteran big on a discount to Golden State, a la David West to the Spurs. This is also an option via sign and trade, especially for the oddly valuable Barnes. Like the WWII French, Golden State’s front line is pathetic. As time goes on, more teams will follow the OKC/Cleveland (Game 3) blueprint of abusing the shooters and dominating the glass.
  15. This series will go another week, maybe more. Thoughts of a sweep, or even a 4-1 Warriors victory have gone the way of Silly Bandz. The Warriors are undoubtedly still the favorite, but a Game 4 victory in Cleveland is extremely unlikely, meaning both teams will be taking multiple cross-country flights.

As it stands today, I’d say Game 3 improved Cleveland’s championship odds from about ten percent to thirty-five percent. Still, like my writing career, my bet is a fucking mess. But, there is hope.

Image via YouTube

    1. Mr. Parlay

      Losing by 33 and winning the next game against the same team by 30 doesn’t seem fishy at all.

      8 years ago at 1:30 pm
    2. LydiaMorrison

      My neighbor’s half-sister got paid 18556 dollar last month. she been working on the internet and moved in a 397750 dollar home. All she did was get blessed and apply the instructions uncovered on this website.. browse this site…. Go Here… http://WWW.NewsShopper.TK

      8 years ago at 2:54 pm
  1. HeismanHopeful

    I found it ironic the Warriors were complaining about that allegedly dirty screen Mosgov set

    8 years ago at 1:24 pm
  2. InternationalFratStudent

    Lebron will always find a reason to bitch at the refs about something

    8 years ago at 1:26 pm
    1. Siblings of Mark Wahlberg

      LeBron is a victim of his own size and physicality; like Shaq but off the dribble instead of after catching in the post (most times)

      He’s so big that refs seem to swallow the whistle and let guards like Thompson hack the shit out of him while (until Game 3 at least) breathing on curry is a foul.

      8 years ago at 1:29 pm
      1. Remarkably.mediocre.white.guy

        I’m pretty sure curry didn’t attempt a FT until the 3rd quarter of game 3

        8 years ago at 1:56 pm
      2. Fraddington_bear

        You have to admit though, he’s become far more limited over the years. Refuses to shoot outside the paint, so in turn, he’s dependent on his teammates to hit 3s and space the floor. Though he hit a few jumpers (when they had already sealed it) last night, overall his confidence in his jimper is gone compared to a few years ago.

        8 years ago at 1:56 pm
      3. Siblings of Mark Wahlberg

        I actually disagree completely. Before 2013 LeBron shot a TERRIBLE 33.5 percent from 3. Since he’s shot almost 39%.

        His shooting is improving immensely, though down to start this season.

        What will be interesting is in 2019 and beyond, when at some point his athleticism has to start to go (at least you’d think) how he reinvents himself.

        I would guess he becomes a post player that facilitates from the paint a la prime Tim Duncan.

        8 years ago at 2:01 pm
      4. Fraddington_bear

        The numbers don’t lie I suppose. Just seems like in the limited time I’ve watched him this year he’s been a bit more gun shy. Also in the interest of full disclosure, I am admittedly a ravenous lebron hater, so I’m biased. And in reference to Love I definitely think he ends up back home in LA, and Griffin ends up in Boston or Cleveland.

        8 years ago at 2:08 pm
      5. Siblings of Mark Wahlberg

        I agree he’s taking less of them but I think that’s more due to the fact he’s now surrounded by shooters.

        At any one time he’s got JR, frye, love and Irving on the floor, all of which knock it down at a higher clip than he does.

        With the basketball iq LeBron has, and the ability to understand his own limitations (imagine how much better Kobe would’ve been if he could do the same) making that extra pass just makes sense.

        8 years ago at 2:19 pm
      6. chillonstfm

        While I would normally agree with this, his complaining in the Hawks series was awful. Not that Atlanta would have have had a chance anyways, but he bitched about every fucking call that he didn’t get.

        8 years ago at 12:17 am
    1. Siblings of Mark Wahlberg

      And droppin’ dimes. Fun fact: only Kevin Love’s body did not have to be altered for the commercial. He really does look like that.

      Or, he at least does play like a prepubescent 11 year old.

      8 years ago at 1:41 pm
  3. AnyTwoWillDo

    Warriors Death LU is +14 so far in 12 total minutes. Their starting LU is -33 overall. If Kerr starts death LU for game 4 to get more minutes, goodnight Cavs.

    Coming from a Cleveland fan

    8 years ago at 1:48 pm
  4. NeverGonnaFratuate

    Kevin Love is just not suited to be the third option for a team. He’s a mediocre defender at best and when he isn’t getting a high volume of touches he’s about as useful as Wally Bryton.

    8 years ago at 2:37 pm
  5. Cartier

    Finals are getting a 12 rating. Sweep is bad for business. Silver is all over this.

    Warriors- print the shirts

    8 years ago at 3:11 pm
    1. Probation Station

      They’re already printed. Except if they lose, a lot of little African kids will get some new clothes.

      8 years ago at 4:54 pm