The Golden State Warriors are 13-1 straight up and 12-2 against the spread in their last 14 games at home. With one more home win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 on Monday, the Warriors could win the NBA championship and lift the Larry O’Brien trophy.
After breaking the NBA record for wins in the regular season, Golden State has endured multiple injuries to the league’s MVP, recovered after losing three of its first four games to Oklahoma City, and now attempts to clinch the title without the man who many would select as the Finals MVP, Draymond Green. Nobody expected the barrage of the challenges coming from all directions in these playoffs and the Warriors have handled them well throughout the organization. For all the haters and doubters out there, a gritty win for the Dubs tonight would be all the more vexing. And it would be a brilliant way to cap a remarkable season for the fans at Roaracle.
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Green has been suspended for this game after he was assessed a flagrant foul for the incident with James. This infraction ran his playoff flagrant foul points total to four, which warrants an automatic one-game suspension. Oddly, three of the four points Green has accumulated came from the NBA office one day after the games. The first flagrant was for throwing Houston’s Michael Beasley to the floor in the first round. Green was not called for a foul during the game. In the Western Conference finals against Oklahoma City, Green’s kick to Steven Adams’ crotch was called a Flagrant 1 during the game, but upgraded to a Flagrant 2 (a two-point infraction). This latest flagrant in Game 4 came on a play on which no foul was called. … With Green out, Warriors coach Steve Kerr has a lineup decision to make. Does he start Andre Iguodala, as he did in the 2015 Finals and match him up against James right off the bat? Or does he keep Iguodala in his sixth-man role and call on Brandon Rush, who hade 25 starts this season? … The Warriors are trying to clinch the championship at home for the first time. Their previous two titles were won in Washington (1975) and Cleveland (2015). The only major league Oakland franchises to win the title at home were the A’s in 1973 and ’74.
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The Cleveland Cavaliers need a victory here in order to force a game six on Thursday night. The Cleveland Cavaliers are averaging 104.9 points on 46.6 percent shooting and allowing 95.5 points on 45.8 percent shooting. LeBron James is averaging 24.6 points and 8.9 rebounds while Kyrie Irving is averaging 23.9 points and 4.9 assists. Tristan Thompson is grabbing 8.6 rebounds and J.R. Smith is dishing 1.3 assists. The Cleveland Cavaliers are shooting 42.3 percent from beyond the arc and 73 percent from the free throw line. The Cavaliers are allowing 34.3 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 43.2 rebounds per game. The Cleveland Cavaliers have lost six of their last 10 road games.
|Stephen Curry||G||Kyrie Irving|
|Klay Thompson||G||J.R. Smith|
|Harrison Barnes||F||Richard Jefferson|
|Mystery Starter||F||LeBron James|
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