Christmas Day NBA Roundup: Kyrie Irving Writes Another Chapter in Growing Legend

December 25th, 2016 by Dan Favale Leave a reply »

In a game that saw LeBron James catch fire from beyond the arc and the Golden State Warriors build a 14-point fourth-quarter lead, Kyrie Irving made the ending about him.

It didn't look like the Cleveland Cavaliers would pull off a 109-108 victory in this NBA Finals rematch. They entered the final frame Sunday shooting under 35 percent from the floor, staving off each Warriors run with a steady diet of offensive rebounds and a supernova LeBron James (31 points, 13 rebounds, four assists).

But Golden State opened the fourth with a 7-0 blitz, extending its lead to a game-high 14. That felt like the end.

Kevin Durant (36 points, 15 rebounds) was in rhythm. Klay Thompson (24 points), seldom idle, kept the Cavaliers defense on its toes away from the ball. Stephen Curry (15 points, three assists) could barely buy a bucket, but he set quality screens, and the Warriors didn't seem to need him.

That should have been the story coming out of this game: the impossibility that is Golden State.

Curry was quiet offensively, but it didn't matter. The Warriors shot under 40 percent on wide-open looks, but whatever. ...

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