June 2, 2016, 8:46 pm
LeBron James scored 23 points on 9-of-21 shooting (including two threes) with 12 boards, nine assists, two steals and one block in Thursday’s Game 1 loss to the Warriors.
LeBron played well enough but as usual he was left high and dry by his teammates and also his coach. Aside from keeping LeBron on the bench during a critical 11-0 run in the second half, Lue thinks he can play a conventional lineup against this Warriors squad and get results. Kevin Love (17 points, 13 boards, one steal, four turnovers), Tristan Thompson (10 points, 12 boards, one block) and Channing Frye (seven minutes) don’t give the Cavs any real advantage and in particular when Draymond Green is at center.
Love and Kyrie Irving (26 points, 7-of-22 FGs, 11-of-12 FTs, three rebounds, four assists, three steals) make the defense a constant scramble and Love isn’t nearly as valuable as Irving is to the offense. J.R. Smith hit just 1-of-3 shots for three points and five personal fouls as he was toasted for much of the night. Check out our article on how the Cavs can have an outside shot at making this series interesting — as it’s not going to happen any other way.