After a 110-102 loss in Game 3 Wednesday, the Cavaliers are in position to be the first team to be swept in the Finals since they fell to the Spurs in four games in 2007.
By the time the game ended, however, Golden State's Kevin Durant had scored a playoff career-high 43 points, including a long clinching 3-pointer, and Stephen Curry ended a nightmarish night with five straight to give the Warriors the win.
Smith said he was hacked and it was all just a good laugh for everybody as Cleveland won Game 4, but then lost Game 5 to end the season. Cleveland kept everyone in check with the exception of Durant. Now, down three games to none in the championship round, his dream of winning more than one ring with the Cavaliers is all but over.
What makes the Warriors-Cavs rivalry special isn't merely the exceptional talent we've seen on the court, battling for the ultimate prize, over the last four years - it's been that the teams have traversed 49-week journeys every year to meet for three weeks in June.
"Not only do you have to have the talent", James said Thursday, "you have to have the minds as well".
Thus far, the Cavs have found little success in knocking the 2014 NBA MVP and former league scoring champ off his game.
The Cavs needed a strong start, and they got it helped by a playground move from James. The Warriors were down just six at the half.
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The problem, though, was that the Cavs couldn't stop Durant.
Maybe it was too cool in Cleveland to wear shorts.
James arrived at 6 p.m. dressed more casually - camouflage trousers, purple hoodie, "Billionaire Boys Club" baseball cap - than on the road where he and the Cavs have been wearing suits during the post-season. You can't have miscommunication, you can't have flaws, you can't have "my faults" or "my bads" or things like that, because they're going to make you pay.
Warriors: Draymond Green passed Wilt Chamberlain (922) for the most rebounds in Warriors playoff history.
"I'm just saying that in broad terms, just overall, I don't think that stuff matters when it comes to player movement and decisions that are being made with players". Green is second with 387, while James is third at 381.
Neither do 28 other teams, but the Cavaliers' problems with him get exposed on the biggest of National Basketball Association stages. The Warriors are 8-18 ATS in their last 26 games following a win and 1-1 ATS in their last five games overall.
James landed badly going for a rebound early in the second quarter and limped on his right ankle, but the four-time NBA Most Valuable Player kept playing and helped keep the Cavaliers in contention in the second half.