Thursday, June 9, 2016

NBA Update

So last night the Cavaliers crushed the Warriors in Cleveland by the absurd score of 120 to 90.  Here's how the series has gone so far:

Game 1:  Golden State 104, Cleveland 89
Game 2:  Golden State 110, Cleveland 77
Game 3:  Cleveland 120, Golden State 90

So that's three blowouts in a row.  To put this in perspective for us college fans, let's see what the score was in each game after 40 minutes:

Game 1:  Golden State 88, Cleveland 74
Game 2:  Golden State 91, Cleveland 64
Game 3:  Cleveland 97, Golden State 74

Now I ask those of you who watch a lot of college basketball:  how often does UK beat SEC opponents, in Rupp Arena, by scores like 91-64 or 97-74?  I can tell you -- very rarely, and usually it only happens if the other team is really bad.  You can go back years and years, and you'll see that even great college teams rarely beat their conference opponents by more than 20 points.  So how is it possible that Cleveland and Golden State -- who are certainly much more evenly matched then, say, Kentucky and Georgia -- are playing so many blowouts?

If I knew the answer to that question, I would enjoy the NBA a lot more than I do.  All I can tell you is that there are a lot of NBA playoff games -- even in the finals -- where one team or the other seems to think that it's better off waiting for the next game, instead of wasting effort on a game that cannot be won.  But there also comes a point -- it happened in Games Six and Seven of the Western Conference Finals -- where both teams realize that we have to win tonight.  And that's when the magic happens.

We haven't gotten there yet in this series.  It may happen in Game Four.


  1. By the way, here were the 40 minute scores in the Western Conference Finals. Notice how the defense got tougher as the games became more important:

    1. OKC 95, GSW 91
    2. GSW 100, OKC 75
    3. OKC 121, GSW 85
    4. OKC 101, GSW 87
    5. GSW 93, OKC 83
    6. OKC 89, GSW 84
    7. GSW 76, OKC 69

  2. The competitive games in that series were games 1, 6, and 7. OKC won the first one, but Golden State won the last two.

  3. I think the NBA should quit calling them "games" of its playoff series and instead call them "stages"--and award special jerseys to all of the players and coaches of the team that wins a stage.