J.R. Smith’s Last-Second Blunder Stuns LeBron and Cavs, Who Lose in OT
Klay Thompson, Steph Curry and Kevin Durant combine for 79 points in Warriors' Game 1 win.
“You gotta know the score. That’s just kinda basketball. You gotta know if you’re winning, losing or tied.”
If Draymond Green had said that to J.R. Smith before the game instead of afterward when the Warriors had escaped with a 124-114 overtime win in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, maybe the Cavaliers would have won.
That’s because with the game tied at 107 with 4.7 seconds left, the Cavs’ George Hill missed the second of two free throws and Smith secured the rebound. But instead of shooting, Smith dribbled away from the hoop and back toward the half-court line, because he mistakenly thought the Cavs had the lead. By the time he realized the score, it was too late and the fourth quarter was over.
Draymond Green: “You gotta know the score.” And then wait until you see his face when he finds out J.R. Smith claimed he knew the score was tied. pic.twitter.com/WgDhgoK0NL
— The Athletic (@TheAthleticSF) June 1, 2018
The game went to overtime and Golden State, buoyed by the costly error and an disputed foul call on LeBron James, opened the extra period with a 9-0 run and cruised to the double-digit victory.
Smith’s mistake overshadowed a brilliant game from LeBron James, who notched in a playoff career-high 51 points and also had eight rebounds and eight assists in 48 minutes on the floor.
That individual effort was almost enough to overcome the trifecta of Klay Thompson (24), Steph Curry (29 points) and Kevin Durant (26) combining for 79 points.
Game 2 is Sunday in Oakland, where the Warriors have won 18 of their last 19 playoff games.
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