Kevin Love cleared to play in Game 1 of NBA Finals

Posted June 01, 2018

The Golden State Warriors may have the luxury of using the series opener as a feel-out game against the new-look Cleveland Cavaliers, but LeBron James will no doubt have to come out swinging.

Stephen Curry (L) in the Under Armour Curry 5 "UA Takeover_2" and LeBron James in the Nike LeBron 15.

"I knew it was a tie-game".

The Warriors scored on their first possession of overtime when Durant drew a foul from Hill that upset James once again and never looked back, outscoring Cleveland 17-7 in the extra session.

Asked about the dramatic ending to regulation, Warriors head coach Kerr told reporters: "Disappointed we didn't get the rebound first". It was the eighth game of at least 40 points by James in this postseason, but his efforts were undone by a controversial replay reversal by the officials and a brain-freeze moment by J.R. Smith that wasted a chance to win in regulation. James, predictably, was salty after the game in his press conference.

Of course, Game 1 was a classic, perhaps throwing salt on the theory people are bored with these two teams playing each other. However, in a post-game interview, Smith made a different version of the story, saying that he knew the game was tied when he got the rebound.

The ending was marred by a flagrant foul by the Cavs' Tristan Thompson, who was ejected, and a shoving incident between Thompson and Draymond Green.

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After play resumed, James hit an inside shot and Curry answered with a 3-point play but Cleveland's George Hill made a free throw to pull the Cavs level at 107-107 with 4.7 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.

"And they called a charge, right?"

While coach Tyronn Lue said Smith thought the Cavs were up by a point, Smith insisted he knew the score. I didn't know what was going on at the time because we were all trying to find a man in case they try to get a shot up and thankfully the time ran out so we could have new life in overtime. I'm pretty sure everybody didn't think I was going to shoot it over KD right there.

Curry scored a three-pointer as the Warriors opened up a one-point lead.

James got the first-half help he needed, not only from Love (12 points and eight rebounds in the first half), but also Smith (seven points plus four rebounds) and Larry Nance Jr.

The top scorers for Golden State were Steph Curry with 26 points, Kevin Durant with 26 and Klay Thompson with 24.