June 15, 2015

Warriors Win Game 5, Need One More for NBA Championship: Stephen Curry scored seven three-pointers and 37 points, leading the Golden State Warriors to a 104-91 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers that puts the team one win from an NBA championship. LeBron James had his second triple-double of the Finals with 40 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists, but it wasn't enough. There were 20 lead changes in the game but the Warriors pulled away late.

posted by rcade to basketball at 08:56 AM - 14 comments

I do not understand playing Mozgov for 9 minutes last night - of all the things that the Cavs could have done, shortening the bench even further and taking the second most effective player they have off the floor for a game is nuts.

Dellavedova is clearly cooked, as is Thompson. The last thing I think they needed was to try to beat Golden State at its own small-ball game - all it did was further decrease the talent they had on the floor.

If Blatt really wants to get creative with lineups and what is left in the tank, get Marion out of purgatory for a little bit, throw him at C against Green (6'7 vs. 6'7), fire Mozgov up for some runs at PF against either of Lee/Barnes, LeBron full-time at PG with Dellavedova offering relief and whatever Jones/Miller/Smith can give you at the 3.

posted by dfleming at 09:16 AM on June 15

What a difference having an extra day off between Games 4 and 5 made for LeBron. Unfortunately for them, the schedule doesn't allow for that extra down time again before Games 6 and 7.

I wish the Cavs could put the effort into total team recovery and replenishment that LeBron puts into his recovery between games.

A couple of interesting pieces on LeBron's workload and level of athletic stress and the intensity of his and his trainer's hour by hour dedication to recovery here and here.

posted by beaverboard at 10:34 AM on June 15

@dfleming, I think that is a great strategy for Clev.,but will Coach James try it?

posted by bo_fan at 10:38 AM on June 15

I do not understand playing Mozgov for 9 minutes last night

If you have a stiff at center, sure, try going small. Mozgov has been the only dependable Cavalier out there so it's surprising to me that they decided to limit his minutes. It seems like an overreaction to Iguodala making shots last game. I'd let Iguodala shoot because if he misses his first couple he gets really tentative about shooting threes and then he becomes a liability in the half court.

On the other side of the ball, I think they need to put Curry in some PnR. Whoever Curry is guarding is the screen man and make Curry have to deal with LeBron coming off a screen.

posted by tron7 at 11:09 AM on June 15

I think we should be grateful that LeBron James doesn't play the cynical draw a foul game that James Harden does. LeBron had only 9 free throws in a game where he went to the rim constantly against very physical defense. If he wanted to accentuate the contact he was getting we'd be in for a much less watchable game. Though, if he was a better free throw shooter maybe he would be more interested in drawing fouls. Whatever the reason, I'm glad we don't see a parade to the stripe.

posted by tron7 at 11:19 AM on June 15

That face.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:25 AM on June 15

I picked the Warriors to win, but I'm cheering for the "underdog" Cavs.

I want LeBron to get this title because it would make for a great story, but I think Curry's game is the most entertaining to watch.

I'm very conflicted about this series, especially since I'm not a huge NBA fan.

posted by grum@work at 11:32 AM on June 15

And...

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:56 AM on June 15

I marvel at the skill displayed in creating a gif like that. I can't imagine all the effort it took, and it was done in less than 12 hours.

Look at all the elements involved!

- giving him a big head
- placing him in front of a different background
- colour palette swapping his jersey
- the eyes/hair
- the fire/electric crackle around his arms
- the small touches like the shockwave when he slaps his chest
- the debris that passes IN FRONT of him

There really should be some mini-Oscars for GIFs and <30 second internet videos. These people should be rewarded for their effort to entertain me for 30 seconds at a time.

posted by grum@work at 12:09 PM on June 15

By the way, it's the same guy who made this one of Dellavedova and LeBron, and the maker said he was inspired by the Mexican soccer coach.

posted by grum@work at 12:13 PM on June 15

There really should be some mini-Oscars for GIFs

I'd watch that, but only if they pronounce GIFs correctly.

posted by tron7 at 12:30 PM on June 15

...the maker said he was inspired by the Mexican soccer coach.

We should be so lucky as to have more Miguel Herrera!

posted by bender at 12:51 PM on June 15

I do not understand playing Mozgov for 9 minutes last night

I believe the theory is that if you have the biggest and best "small" guy on the floor, you should have an advantage. This would hold true if your other 4 small guys were a match for the other team's small guys. It is pretty obvious that they are not, and why Blatt persisted in the strategy for so much of the game is beyond me. In his defense, perhaps he realized that Mozgov could actually be a defensive liability despite his length and shot blocking ability. Golden State has the ability to penetrate down the lane, and Mozgov, when he moves to help, is not quick enough to get back and cover a pass to another Warrior underneath. Once Golden State is making its 3-point shots, packing the defense in down low is not a solution. It's sort of a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation for Cleveland now.

posted by Howard_T at 10:52 PM on June 15

Once Golden State is making its 3-point shots, packing the defense in down low is not a solution.

I totally get you, but increased minutes and perimeter coverage from JR Smith (who isn't stopping the three or contributing efficiently on the other end) is less of a solution than Mozgov giving them ample high-percentage looks at the other end even if he's allowing some penetration opportunities.

It'd make sense if they had the personnel to match, but they so clearly don't so to me it's a strategy that's doomed to fail.

posted by dfleming at 12:30 AM on June 16

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