For the first time in this year’s NBA Finals, Golden State pulled away from the Cleveland Cavaliers at the end of a game. The Warriors’ balanced team effort beat the Cavaliers, 103-82, evening the series 2-2 and earning back home-court advantage.
Here’s what you need to know if you missed Game 4.
Star of the Game: Andre Iguodala, Golden State Warriors
Iguodala’s stat line wasn’t incredible in his first start of the year. But his effect on both sides of the floor may have swung momentum in the series. The veteran scored 22 points on an efficient 15 shots and grabbed eight rebounds. More importantly, he helped hold LeBron James to 7-of-22 from the field as Golden State dominated in the closing minutes or in the fourth quarter. Coach Steve Kerr inserted Iguodala into the starting lineup over Andrew Bogut prior to tip-off and the forward took advantage.
Play of the Game: Curry’s step-back three
Golden State held a double-digit lead for most of the game, but let Cleveland back into the game in the third quarter. In fact, the Cavaliers cut the lead to three points with less than 30 seconds left in the third. On the next possession, Stephen Curry brought the ball up and used a pick to get the switch on Tristan Thompson. Curry faked right, but stepped back left and nailed a dagger three. The shot put the Warriors up six points heading into the fourth and ignited a 17-5 run that pushed Golden State ahead for good.
Number of the Game: 33.0
With Golden State’s usual starting center Andrew Bogut went to the bench, there were worries about how it would affect the Warriors’ defense. Consider those questions answered. Cleveland shot only 33 percent from the field and a paltry 14.8 percent from the 3-point line.
Surprise of the Game: LeBron James’ off night
LeBron James came into the game averaging more than 40 points per game, but he could muster only 20 in 41 minutes in Game 4. After hitting his head on a camera in the second quarter, James looked reluctant to drive and settled for jump shots. He still posted 12 rebounds and eight assists, but James did not have the same effect on the game he had in the first three games.
Advanced Stat of the Game: True shooting percentage
True shooting percentage looks at shooting percentage, also taking into account free throws and 3-pointers. By shooting more than 46 percent from the field and 40 percent from three, the Warriors posted a 57.9 true shooting percentage. Cleveland shot 33 percent from the field and hit just four threes, which gave them a low 40.9 true shooting percentage. Golden State’s would have been the highest in basketball this season, while Cleveland’s is almost eight points lower than the worst team.
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