Durant dominates as Warriors push Cavaliers to the brink

Durant dominates as Warriors push Cavaliers to the brink

By the time the game ended, however, Golden State's Kevin Durant had scored a playoff career-high 43 points, including a long clinching 3-pointer, and Stephen Curry ended a nightmarish night with five straight to give the Warriors the win.

The Cavaliers' J.R. Smith said his team's Game 3 loss to the Warriors in the NBA Finals "hurt more" than their Game 1 loss.

"It was like deja vu watching him hit that shot again", Cavs forward Kevin Love said.

Curry and Thompson combined for just 21 points on 7-of-27 shooting from the field.

The Cavs did everything we thought they needed to do and yet, still, it wasn't enough. "He's one of the best players that I've ever played against that this league has ever seen".

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Cleveland made an early push to turn Game 3 into a blowout, but Durant's spectacular shot-making wouldn't let that happen. Game 4 is Friday night in Cleveland. They only had to reckon with Golden State's most deadly 12 minutes. The Cavaliers opted to trap Curry from the opening tip, and the Warriors countered by working the ball into Durant at the midpost and letting him go to work one-on-one.

Golden State guarded James better in Game 2-though he still scored 29 points on 50 percent shooting and had 13 assists-and they could be even better equipped to slow down James in Game 3.

For the third straight time in that unprecedented run of championship showdowns, the Warriors prevailed in Games 1 and 2 on their home floor, Oracle Arena.

Kendrick Perkins, in street clothes seated on Cleveland's bench Sunday night, failed to move his feet or legs as Curry backpedaled after missing a 3-point attempt at the end of the third quarter.

For as spectacular as LeBron James has been in the first two games, his Cleveland Cavaliers are down 2-0 largely because the Warriors' supporting cast members like Livingston and McGee - journeymen of sorts - are soundly outplaying their Cavs' counterparts. Thanks to a couple late-game mental lapses, the Warriors narrowly escaped with a 124-114 overtime win.

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James recorded his 10th triple-double of the playoffs and it didn't matter.

The Cavaliers opened their biggest lead of the series at 13 points and maintained a double-digit advantage through much of the first two quarters, built mostly through the shooting of James and Smith and the rebounding of Kevin Love, who has quietly had a tremendous series.

James arrived at 6 p.m. dressed more casually - camouflage trousers, purple hoodie, "Billionaire Boys Club" baseball cap - than on the road where he and the Cavs have been wearing suits during the postseason.

"This is the beauty of this team and the luxury that we have of having multiple big-time scorers", Kerr said. So we've got to continue to just grind and defend as we did tonight.

And then with two-and-half minutes to go in the game, he finally broke through. Hood was averaging 16.8 points when he was acquired by Cleveland at the deadline, a scoring average only LeBron is clearing for the Cavs this postseason.

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