While the two teams have met three straight times in the NBA Finals, it was newcomer for Golden Statewho made the difference. In Oakland, the Warriors are the first team in history to squander a 3-1 Finals lead.
He dedicated the trophy to his mother Wanda in his remarks.
"That confidence, I always want to exude that in my teammates and have them understand that the magnitude of this moment's the only thing that matters", Irving said.
Golden State knows it too must make adjustments, including getting a hand in the face of the Cavs' sharpshooters after surrendering a Finals record 24 3-pointers Friday, seven of those by Irving during his 40-point masterpiece.
The Warriors are no longer unbeaten in the playoffs, but James said they still have the Cavaliers where they want them.
In a recent interview, Jefferson said the pressure is on the Warriors (and not the Cavs) because they finished 73-9 last season then added Durant.
"We have championship DNA", said James, who broke Magic Johnson's record with his ninth triple-double in the Finals.
The Warriors led the Cavs 71-60 at halftime. The Cavaliers outscored Golden State 72-33 from beyond the arc.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr was in denial past year. The dunk forced a Warriors timeout when the Cavs margin grew to 41-33 near the 10-minute mark.
Consider these facts: Despite scoring 49 points in the first quarter, 86 by halftime and 115 through three periods, Cleveland still allowed the Dubs to score 117 total points. They turned it around and went from down by eight to up by 11, as part of a 21-2 run.
Not since 1996 had a team up 3-0 failed to sweep in the final. "I can't imagine they put themselves in position to go back to Cleveland for Game 6 and start feeling the pressure in Game 7".
"He hit that one from near mid-court and it looked like a mid-range jump shot..."
The Warriors took their only loss of the playoffs Friday night. This time, it was a seemingly insurmountable 3-0 hole. Green, expected to start in the 9 p.m. tip-off, was banished for Game 5 a year ago for punching the Cavaliers'LeBron James in the groin in Game 4.
The rest is history as Cleveland fought back in one of the most incredible Finals series in National Basketball Association history.
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