OAKLAND – Here are four things to watch in Game 2 of the NBA Finals:
RETURN OF THE SPLASH BROTHERS:
We didn’t recognize Steph Curry and Klay Thompson in Game 1, when they combined to score 20 points on 8-of-27 shooting from the field. The Cavs credited their defense, even though each has his share of open looks. Expect at least one of them will find his touch even if Cleveland’s defense gets a bit tighter.
The Warriors dominated this area in Game 1, outscoring Cavs reserves 45-10. Though Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston should continue to have their moments at both ends, Cleveland absolutely has to get more out of designated shooter Channing Frye. The man who was shooting 57.8 percent beyond the arc in the playoffs managed only 2 points and had only one attempt from deep.
[GAMEDAY: Warriors look to end LeBron's Game 2 streak]
Cavs star LeBron James was spot on when he said it’s hard to win, particularly on the road, with 17 turnovers giving the opponent 25 points. The Warriors forced most of them by attacking stars Kyrie Irving (three turnovers), Kevin Love (four) and James (four). It’s up to the Cavs to be better, because the Warriors will employ the same strategy.
Guard J.R. Smith in these playoffs has attempted 109 3-pointers, more than any other Cleveland player, and has been accurate (45.9 percent). He’s coping with a hand injury. The guy wearing his jersey in Game 1 played 36 minutes and took three shots, the fewest ever with such a high minutes total. He scored 3 points, shooting 1-of-3 from deep. The Warriors want to see that guy again. The Cavs do not.