Tag: Golden State Warriors

Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson

Kyrie Irving re-injures knee; status for Game 2 (and series) up in air


OAKLAND — For four quarters Kyrie Irving was looking like he could be the difference in the NBA Finals.

He may end up being, but not in the way he intended.

Irving re-injured his left knee and had to leave the game midway through the overtime of Game 1, a Cavaliers loss. He limped back to the locker room, then after the game badly limped out of the locker room with ice packs on his knee.

There is no diagnosis yet — there will be an MRI on Friday — but Irving left the locker room on crutches. He told the media to “listen to the tone of his voice,” noting that he sounded worried. He said this injury felt different than the tendonitis he had been battling.

“He’s with the doctors right now being evaluated,” Cavaliers coach David Blatt said after the game. “I can’t give you any specifics yet. We just don’t know.”

“It was very tough to see, I’ve seen how hard he worked the past eight days to get back to the level he was playing at tonight,” LeBron James said. “It was hard to see him leave the locker room on crutches.”

If Irving is going to miss games, or be limited, the Cavaliers’ chances in this series drop off severely.

During regulation, Irving was showing few effects of the knee tendonitis that had kept him out of two games the last round and limited him when he was on the court these playoffs. Irving had 23 points, seven rebounds, six assists, he was 10-of-22 shooting, he even hit 7-of-14 on contested looks. Then late in the fourth quarter had a game-saving block on what looked like a wide-open Stephen Curry layup.

Then at 2:22 in the fourth and the Cavaliers down four and needing a bucket, Irving drove to his right putting his shoulder into Klay Thompson, then by the elbow tried to stop up for what may have been a pull-up jumper, but his feet seemed to come out from under him. Irving fell to the ground.

He got up, tried to run to the other end on defense but just limped. He was quickly taken out of the game and went straight to the locker room.

“It’s something I hate to see,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.  “I never like to see anybody get injured on either team.  I want everybody healthy.  And I hope he can play.  I mean that.  You probably don’t believe me, but I mean that.  You want everybody healthy.  You want everybody playing.  This is the dream of every player, to come to the NBA Finals and perform and compete.  So I hope he’s okay.”

The Cavaliers already felt like they let a game they could have won get away Thursday night. Combine that with this Irving injury and the mountain the Cavaliers must climb suddenly looks like Everest.

NBA Finals: Warriors take overtime Game 1 win over Cavaliers


LeBron James was fantastic to open the NBA Finals, and Stephen Curry hit shots worthy of his MVP recognition.

But in the end, free throws in overtime decided the first game of the championship round more than anything else, and Golden State came way with the 108-100 victory to take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.

James did all he could for his Cavaliers, finishing with 44 points, eight rebounds and six assists. But Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 47 points, and Andre Iguodala was huge off the bench with 15 points on eight shots, and the Warriors pulled away for the win in the overtime session.

This was a critical opportunity for Cleveland to steal home court advantage, but the Cavaliers ultimately couldn’t take control. Kyrie Irving’s knee was a concern heading into the series, but he largely played as though it wasn’t an issue, until he aggravated the injury and was forced to sub out with only a couple of minutes to play in the contest.

Irving played well until that point, and finished with 23 points, seven rebounds, six assists and four steals in almost 44 minutes of action. His status is uncertain for the remainder of the series.

The Cavaliers had a chance to steal this one in regulation. After Irving blocked a layup attempt from Stephen Curry, LeBron missed a long jumper on the ensuing possession, and Iman Shumpert missed a chance at a follow. Cleveland failed to score in overtime until James drove for a layup with only nine second left, when the game had already been decided.

Kyrie Irving blocks Stephen Curry’s layup to save game, force overtime (VIDEO)

2015 NBA Finals - Game One

Game 1 of the Finals between the Cavs and Warriors went to overtime, in large part because of this block by Kyrie Irving on Stephen Curry to prevent the Warriors from taking the lead:

It was easily the biggest defensive play of the game, and of Irving’s career.

Andre Iguodala puts moves on LeBron, throws it down (VIDEO)

2015 NBA Finals - Game One

For throwback Thursday, we bring you Andre Iguodala circa 2009.

Well, not exactly, this did happen in 2015 at the NBA Finals, but it sure felt like old-school Andre, putting the moves on LeBron James, driving and throwing it down.

Iguodala was 3-of-4 for six points off the bench for Golden State, leading (along with Marreese Speights) a comeback after the Warriors were down by 15 at one point.

LeBron had 19 points on 16 shots in the first half.

David Lee expects Warriors to try trading him this offseason

Memphis Grizzlies v Golden State Warriors - Game Five

When a report emerged two years ago about the Warriors trying to trade David Lee, the forward said that wasn’t the case.

Golden State reportedly tried harder to trade Lee last year.

Now, he has wised up.

Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com:

Lee, on the books for $15.4 million in 2015-16 as the final installment of a six-year, $80-million deal as part of a sign-and-trade with the Knicks, knows they will try to trade him.

“I think they tried to trade me the last two years, didn’t they?” he told NBA.com.

“That’s nothing new,” he said of preparing to be traded. “But once again, what’s kind of predicted and what ends up happening is not always the same thing. We’ll just see what happens. I love it here. We have accomplished a lot here. We’ll see once the season’s over. The most important thing, though, is getting this ring first and then worrying about that later.”

Lee is right. Though he has handled his demotion this season with class and provides solid insurance behind the team’s rotation players, Golden State will try to trade him.

The financials mandate it.

Let’s say – perhaps generously – the Warriors decline Marreese Speight’s team option, and Brandon Rush declines his player option. Add a max contract for Draymond Green, the standard 120 percent of scale for the No. 30 pick and four minimum contracts to fill the roster.

Using data from Basketball Insiders and the projected luxury-tax line, that’d give Golden State a payroll of $136,078,768 –$99,124,416  in salary and$36,954,352 luxury-tax payments.

Remove Lee, and it drops to $86,676,840 –$83,630,736 in salary and$3,046,104 in luxury-tax payments.

The Warriors don’t use Lee much, anyway. They sure don’t want to pay nearly $50 million to keep him next season.

But they want to keep Green, which means working hard to find a new home for Lee.