The Golden State Warriors will, by far, be the best offensive team the Cleveland Cavaliers have faced in the playoffs (the Atlanta Hawks could have been, but we all know what happened there). At the helm of the Warriors’ attack is the 2015 MVP Steph Curry, who rains down threes as easily as LeBron James throws down dunks.
Stopping Curry will be of utmost importance for the Cavaliers, but there’s just one problem… no one’s really been able to do that this year, as LeBron himself notes.
Steph’s numbers have dipped a little in the playoffs, but he’s been consistently great for the most part. Whomever guards him on the Cavs has to make everything Curry does leading up to his shot as tough as possible, busting the screens that are supposed to get him open, slightly bumping him on his way to the rim, bothering his every movement.
While the Warriors will similarly have their hands full with James, their strategy for slowing down the King is a bit more clear. LeBron is shooting 44-of-164 (26.8 percent) from outside the paint in playoffs, so it’s likely the Warriors will employ the same method the San Antonio Spurs did last year in the Finals… turn LeBron into a jump shooter. If he hits those shots, and he very well could, you live with that. Play the percentages, and don’t let LeBron live in the post and at the rim.
The playoffs have been generally unexciting thus far, but if both LeBron and Steph go off like they’re capable of doing, the Finals may compensate for those lackluster earlier rounds.