Good morning! The Cleveland Cavaliers won Game 3 of the NBA Finals, beating the Golden State Warriors, 120-90. Here are the plays everybody will be talking about Thursday.
LeBron James unleashed the dunk of the Finals. The Cavs finally looked like the dominant force that we know they can be, led by LeBron James scoring 32 points and Kyrie Irving who had 30. James seemed to have a renewed sense of unleashing his physical presence on the game. We saw that during an alley-oop dunk late in the third quarter. It started with a great defensive play by LeBron, stealing a pass from Stephen Curry, somehow maintaining his dribble as he fell to the floor, and then catching and dunking a pass from Irving that few players would have been able to catch. Throw it down, big fella!
Not in LeBron’s house! In a bizarre move that had nothing to do with the outcome of the game, but may have sent a psychological message to Stephen Curry and the Warriors, Curry grabbed a dead ball and tried to dunk it only to have LeBron James block the shot. The play, a move reminiscent of Kevin Garnett, happened as all the other players were just standing around and the few in the crowd who saw what happened enjoyed what they saw. Curry tried to laugh it off, but also seemed a little shaken by it.
JR Smith had a great night and his best shot didn’t even count. JR Smith, who averaged just 4.0 points per game in the first two games of the Finals, erupted for 20 in Game 3. But it was his shot that didn’t count that was the most memorable. In a way, it was the play that best summed up Game 3. With time running out in the second quarter, Klay Thompson forced an ugly fall-away shot that also left too much time on the clock. Smith charged up the court and sank a bomb from mid-court. As replays showed, it was just a fraction of a second late, but it also showed that Smith had finally arrived in this series.
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