Game 5 of the NBA Finals was played on Monday night back at Oracle Arena. After suffering their first postseason loss in Game 4, the Golden State Warriors had a chance to clinch the series back at home.
LeBron James and the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers would fight until the very end, but the Warriors just had too much firepower as Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry led them to a 129-120 win and Golden State’s second NBA Championship in three seasons.
Durant had another strong performance, scoring 39 points, grabbing seven rebounds and dishing out five assists. He would be named Bill Russell NBA Finals MVP after averaging 35.2 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 5.4 assists in the series.
Curry did more than his share as well, adding 34 points of his own to go along with 10 assists and enjoying easily his best Finals performance in three seasons.
The Warriors fell behind early but used a 28-4 second quarter run to take control of the game. 2015 Finals MVP, Andre Igoudala, had his best performance of the postseason and scored 20 points off the bench, including hitting some timely shots.
LeBron James scored 41 points, grabbed 13 rebounds, and dished out eight assists to lead the Cavs. He is the only player in NBA Finals history to average a triple-double in a series. Kyrie Irving followed up his 41-point performance in Game 4 with 26 points, but struggled from the field.
Cleveland’s other superstar, Kevin Love, struggled mightily throughout the game and finished with only six points and 10 rebounds, but the Cavs got huge games from a couple of their role players.
J.R. Smith was on fire, finishing with 25 points while making seven of his eight three-pointers and Tristan Thompson added 15 points and eight rebounds in his best game of the series.
The Cavs showed their championship grit, never quitting and giving the Warriors everything they had. But this night, and series, was all about Durant, Curry, and what looks to be the beginning of a long Warriors dynasty.