Takeaways From Game 2 of the 2018 NBA Finals
Jordan Clarkson Shouldn’t Play
Jordan Clarkson has been one of the worst players in this series so far. In two games, Clarkson has shot 3-13 from the field. In Game 1, Clarkson went in when George Hill got in foul trouble. After he started sucking, I was yelling at the TV “Get him out the game!” I know they needed a point guard, but LeBron could have done it. Kyle Korver should have been the second guard to J.R. Smith instead of Clarkson. Clarkson didn’t play much in Game 2, but when he did play he was terrible. Ty Lue needs to realize that he’s not playing well at all and keep him on the bench. He hasn’t done anything even close to helping the Cavaliers. All he’s done is hurt them. There’s a reason why Twitter is roasting Jordan Clarkson right now, and it’s not because he didn’t know the score.
Cleveland Can’t Start Slow if They Want to Win
Cleveland didn’t start off well in this game, while the Warriors started off hot. With about eight minutes left in the first quarter, the Warriors had already taken a 15-6 lead over the Cavs. For most of the game, Cleveland stayed within 6-8 points of the Warriors. There were times when they were down by 13 and times when they got within four, but the Warriors never really gave the Cavs a chance to catch up. Cleveland stayed around until the fourth quarter, but they could never recover from their slow start. If the Cavaliers want to win a game in these NBA Finals, they can’t get off to a slow start. They need to come out hot and build an early lead. Playing from behind won’t work against the Warriors.
The Refs Continue to Make Bad Calls That Hurt Cleveland
The refs really blew it at the end of Game 1. They made some horrible calls against the Cavaliers that put them in a situation where they were tied at the end of the fourth quarter with the Warriors. We all know what happened after that. If the refs had made the correct calls, the Cavaliers would never have been in that situation in the first place. The Cavs got absolutely screwed by the refs in Game 1. Cleveland didn’t get screwed in the fourth quarter of Game 2, but they did get some either bad or no calls throughout the game. Here are some that stick out.
1. Kevin Durant is driving to the rim and LeBron knocks the ball off Durant, but the refs called it Warriors ball. The replay clearly showed it was off Durant and not James.
2. During the game, Ty Lue got a technical for arguing a call. It’s not like he was livid about it or anything, he just didn’t like it. Later in the game, Draymond Green tried arguing with the refs after he thought LeBron James traveled. The refs didn’t call anything on Draymond for arguing. It doesn’t make sense to me why they let Draymond Green argue, but not Ty Lue.
3. Another time during the game, LeBron went up to catch a deep pass, but was hit on his way down and lost the ball. It was called out of bounds on James and the Warriors got the ball, but it clearly should have been a foul. LeBron was hit and wasn’t given space to land.
This game was not close when it was all said and done, but remember that the Cavs were only down by 10 entering the fourth quarter. These calls didn’t hurt the Cavs in the fourth quarter, but what they did do is not allow them to ever get in a rhythm. Some people think LeBron is a cry baby because he complains about calls all the time, but after these two games you have to see why he does it. The refs are constantly making bad calls against him and his team that have an impact on the game. Something needs to be done. Maybe it’s happening to the Warriors too and I’m just not seeing it. If it is, please let me know.
J.R. Smith May Not Recover From Game 1
After the huge mistake in Game 1 that has seemingly doomed the Cavaliers, many thought J.R. Smith would come out in Game 2 and have a big game. That wasn’t even close to what happened. J.R. Smith had just 5 points in Game 2 after shooting 2-9 from the field and 1-4 from three point range. His mistake that lost the first game for the Cavaliers is something he may not recover from at this point. Warriors fans chanted “MVP” for Smith and gave him a standing ovation when the starting lineups were announced, which seems to have gotten into Smith’s head.
The Real Warriors Are Back
Golden State took control of Game 2 from the start. How did they do it? They played their usual style of basketball. The Warriors finished Game 2 with 28 assists. Draymond Green had 7, Durant had 7, Curry had 8, and four other Warriors players had at least 1 assist. That’s Warriors basketball. They didn’t play like they played against the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference Finals. They didn’t play a lot of iso ball, but instead passed the ball. This is the dangerous Warriors team we’re used to seeing. If they continue to play this way, the series is probably already over.