If you weren’t watching Game 1 of the 2018 NBA Finals, you should’ve been.
What was expected to be a blowout victory for the Golden State Warriors, turned into another mind boggling performance from Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James.
The Akron, Ohio, native notched a career-high in points during a Finals game, posting 51 points on 19-32 shooting from the floor. The narrative during the NBA postseason has been that James has received very little help from his teammates, and they’d eventually run into the Warriors’ potent offense; however, “The King” could care less, and he put his talents on full display Thursday night.
For most of the game, the teams exchanged buckets back and forth, keeping it close until the end of regulation. Part Four of the Warriors-Cavs Finals series had Twitter in a frenzy, with several members of the Raiders commenting on the game.
It didn’t take long for LeBron to get rolling, and Raiders quarterback Derek Carr had to give credit where credit was due.
In true JaVale McGee fashion, the Warriors center missed a wide open dunk, which will certainly place him on Shaquille O’Neal’s notorious “Shaqtin’ a Fool” snippet.
As the end of the fourth quarter approached, the game was up for grabs. With under a minute to play, James set his feet, ready to take a charge from Warriors small forward Kevin Durant who came barreling down the lane; however, the call would be made against James, with one ref saying he committed a blocking foul. Durant would end up making both free throws, but the call from the refs had those watching the game in utter disbelief, causing several people to complain on Twitter.
Following Durant’s trip to the free throw line, James brought the ball up with the clock ticking down, receiving a double team from Warriors point guard Steph Curry and power forward Draymond Green. Trying to find the open man, LeBron sailed a pass to Cavs point guard George Hill, who ended up getting fouled by Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson.
With Hill at the line, the NBA journeyman needed to sink one shot to tie the game at 107, or make both to give his team a 108-107 lead. After sinking his first, Hill’s second shot clanked off the front of the rim, bouncing straight into Cavs shooting guard J.R. Smith’s hands who had an opportunity to shoot an open layup, but opted to dribble the ball out passed the three-point line, clearly unaware of the score. The puzzling decision to pass up the shot caused the game to go to overtime, and LeBron to become visibly outraged.
As soon as overtime started, the Warriors were determined to run the Cavs out of the gym, and they did just that. Despite LeBron’s absurd 50-point performance, the Cavs would fall to the “Dubs” 124-114.
You might want to make sure you tune in for Game 2 this Sunday.