NBA Finals: Cavaliers Grind Their Way to a Game 2 Win


Considering the circumstances we may have witnessed the greatest victory in Cleveland Cavaliers history. Tell me if this doesn’t sound impressive: Your second and third best player are sidelined (Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love), you are in one of the most un winnable environments the NBA has to offer, 3,000 miles away from home (Warriors 47-3 at Oracle Arena) and not to mention that team your facing is a juggernaut offensively and defensively,but yet you still win.

David Blatt and his Cavaliers exemplified defensive grind to a tee and came out on top to win game 2, defeating the Golden State Warriors 95-93. After a gutwrenching game one overtime loss that saw them lose Irving to a broken kneecap the Cavs used their defense to to spearhead the victory.

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  • The most notable defensive effort came from Matthew Dellavedova. He did as great of a job on fellow point guard Stephen Curry that anyone has ever put on. Delly (along with help from several others) was able to hold the Baby-Faced Assassin to 5 for 23 shooting from the field (2-15 from three). Delly was in Curry’s coat tail all night, fighting through numerous screens that usually spring Curry open for uncontested shots. Dellavedova has certainly had his moments during this year’s playoffs but this was his most stellar performance. He also hit the go-ahead free throws in overtime after getting fouled on a big rebound with 10.1 seconds to go.

    After the game Lebron James gave Dellavedova rave reviews for his performance. ” He was huge for us. We Knew we could count on him because we’ve been in this situation before. He gave us everything he had and more.”

    Oh yeah, speaking of that James guy, he turned in another performance fit for a king with 39 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists. Although the statline is gaudy offensively, it wasn’t always pretty. Lebron struggled to finish inside the paint (he was just 4 for 16 inside the paint and 11 for 34 overall) but he was able to get to the free throw line 18 times (making 14).

    The King’s supporting cast was much better. The bench of James Jones and J.R. Smith were able to conjure up 21 points including four three pointers after scoring just nine in game one. Smith in particular made a concerted effort to score off the dribble rather than assume his regular catch and shoot mode. He was a key part in the win even though he made a handful of bone headed mistakes that could have easily had the team down 2-0 (welcome to the J.R. Smith experience ladies and gentlemen).

    Now it’s a series and the Cavs have taken hold of the home court advantage. Game three will be at the Quicken Loans Arena where the Cavs have burried their opponents all year, much like the Warriors had done at Oracle. Can the Cavs do the impossible and take control of the series undermanned? They will seek to take a 2-1 series lead on Tuesday for game three.

    (All stats per