This play is pretty much a Rorschach test for your fandom in this series — fans from both sides will see the other team as making the cheap play.
It starts in a transition situation when Stephen Curry cuts right, and Draymond Green stops short to give Matthew Dellavedova a hard shoulder to the ground as he tried to track Curry. That could have/should have been a foul (moving screen at the least).
Dellavedova responded with a low blow, catching Green in the hips and maybe a little lower. The people who think Delly is a dirty player are going to point to this.
Apparently Robert Horry and Bobby Knight have something in common: They are not in the Charles Barkley the player fan club.
Horry was a starter on the “Clutch City” Houston championship teams of 1994 and 1995 as an ahead-of-his-time floor spacing big man knocking down threes. But just before the 1996-97 season, he was shipped out to Phoenix as part of a trade that brought Barkley to Phoenix to pair with Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. That team never got past the Utah Jazz.
“Now they bring in Barkley, a guy who doesn’t like to practice, a guy who doesn’t work hard… And you would have added us to the mix so it’s two vets and two young, we would’ve had a great team. But no, they think, ‘we’re going to bring in Charles.’ But hell you just realize Charles didn’t win anything in Phoenix, he didn’t win anything in Philly. And sometimes, you know, great players don’t make a great team better.”
Ouch. So you’re saying Barkley isn’t a winner?
“No, I wouldn’t say that. I would just say he brings a different element to a team. And sometimes you have too many chefs in the kitchen — think about it, you had Clyde, you had Dream, and then you had Charles — those are three scorers, and there’s only one basketball. Most teams only have 2 good scorers… and I think he was just too much for that team.”
Horry’s point that there needs to be a fit with role players was as true then as it is proving to be in the current NBA Finals (where both teams have role players who perfectly fit what they want to accomplish). You can have too many stars who don’t fit in the system smoothly. (And in today’s NBA, too many stars makes it hard to put the right players around them to win.)
But to say Barkley didn’t work hard… that’s not the guy I saw on the court most nights.
Curry says his fall vs. Houston not related to shooting slump
While other factors have been at play — the Cavaliers have played quality defense on Curry with Iman Shumpert and Matthew Dellavedova — Curry has hit contested shots all season. Then he was 1-of-9 on uncontested shots in Game 2.
“Uh, no. that had nothing to do with it,” (Curry) said of the head contusion correlation. “I felt good … I feel fine. Just got to shoot better.”
“No, he’s fine physically, and shots come and go,” Kerr said when asked about the possible correlation. “As I said, we could have done a better job offensively of getting him some rhythm. Hopefully we can do that tonight, but it’s all part of the process. Nobody would say a word (about Curry’s slump) if it was the regular season. But it’s not, so the focus is on that. He’ll make them. He always does.”
Of course, those two are going to say there is no connection, what else are they going to say?
The reason I have trouble buying the fall and shooting slump are related: There was a week off between the end of the Houston series and the Finals, then two more games off between Games 1 and 2. That’s a long time to rest a sore body. I think it’s just a combo of good defense and him not finding shots in rhythm.
We didn’t see many adjustments from the Warriors between games 1 and 2 of the NBA Finals — to a man they thought they just needed to play better and things would fall in line.
Nope. The gritty Cleveland Cavaliers used an intense, physical defense and evened the series 1-1.
Now with Game 3 the chess match starts, and that’s what I talk about a little in this PBT Extra. Look for the Warriors to go inside more on dribble penetration, and we’ll see how the Cavaliers deal with that at home.