“It’s not miserable. It’s just not the end of the world,” James said, according to USA Today. “It’s still a basketball game. I don’t take it that far.”
The Warriors beat the Cavs in last year’s NBA Finals, and Golden State has now won both rematches of the 2015–16 season after defeating Cleveland 89–83 on Christmas Day.
“It’s never as bad and it’s never as good as it may seem when you’re going through it,” James said. “Obviously, you want to play well and especially on a stage like this versus the defending champions. But for me as a leader of this ball club over the last six or seven years, I’ve always been even-keeled about wins and losses, especially at this juncture of the season.”
James led his team with 16 points, but was outpaced by Stephen Curry’s 35-point performance in just 28 minutes on the floor. The loss marked the worst plus-minus (-35), worst home loss (34 points) and largest deficit (43) of James’s 13-season career.
The Cavaliers (28–11) will next face the Brooklyn Nets (11–31) on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in New York.
- Erin Flynn