Kerr said he decided Sunday morning that he was able to return to coaching after being sidelined by constant pain because of complications following a pair of back surgeries almost two years ago.
"They're the defending champions", Livingston said. James is someone, perhaps the only someone, against whom he measures himself. "I'm feeling better. I'm feeling more like I did at the end of the regular season", Kerr said. "It was a momentum swing".
"Do you want to share?"
Durant and Curry had 15 points apiece for the Warriors in the half. Instead, Love was one of the few bright spots, and his time at center was a wrinkle that seemed to open things up for the offense.
Heading into Game 2, Thompson was mired in an extended playoff shooting slump. And when Kerr came back to the job and acting coach Mike Brown went back to being his right-hand man, the transition was seamless.
"Before he even came in the locker room, it came across my phone". At one practice during the Western Conference finals, Kerr laid flat on folding chairs while reading his smart phone. "It's going to be wild on the road with the fans and the atmosphere", Pachulia said. He remains coy about his overall condition but said he felt comfortable enough to move forward. The intention is to coach tonight and the rest of the series. "That's the whole idea". We knew it was going to be tough. "I know that wound is still fresh".
Kerr's wasn't the only return the Warriors celebrated. And anyway, the team is loaded with veterans and talent. It was the first time he coached the Warriors since April 19.
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The Warriors, who welcomed back coach Steve Kerr after he missed 11 games with health issues following 2015 back surgery, grabbed a 2-0 edge in the best-of-seven series, which shifts to Cleveland for games three and four on Wednesday and Friday. If somebody is struggling, they can just find someone else with their precision ball movement.
Towards the end of the third quarter, James looked like he was absolutely spent as he made drive after drive to the basket early on. "If I do that, it'll all even out". The game turned when Curry sank a 3-pointer and two free throws, then dribbled impressively around James for a layup to cap a 10-3 run that put the Warriors ahead 83-73 early in the third. He was the missing link and if his chilly past is over, will raise an interesting dilemma for the Cavs.
While James has delivered - he had a triple-double Sunday night in Game 2 - it hasn't been almost enough against the superstar-laden Golden State Warriors. The Warriors haven't been flawless in this series and yet still were buoyed by blowouts. He was far from flawless - Curry committed eight turnovers and was 7 of 17 from the field - but he provided the ideal counter punch to another sterling performance by Durant, who finished with 33 points, 13 rebounds and six assists.
Cleveland's role players should play better at home-role players tend to do that. While James has thrived so far and had 29 points, 11 rebounds and 14 assists to tie Magic Johnson's record with his eighth career Finals triple-double Sunday, he hasn't gotten almost enough help. It also matched Paul Pierce for most in a Finals quarter. His body language spoke four-letter words and was finally pulled with five minutes left, with the rout in progress.
"I'm playing with a lot of energy".
Again: LeBron is the first line of defense against Durant and that's a contest he's losing. He followed his 21 rebounds in Game 1 by scoring 27 points in Game 2. He's done that many times in a great career, yet that's a lot to ask against a team the caliber of the Warriors. The trouble is that Golden State runs so many actions involving so many risky players that to even have a hope of containing them requires something nearing perfection. There are flashes - five minutes here, seven there - where the Warriors appear like an all-time great team, like those in the 1980s with the Magic Johnson-Lakers, Larry Bird-Celtics and Julius-Erving Sixers.
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