CLEVELAND -– Once again, the Warriors fell victim to the 'Game 3 Blues,' and this time it allowed the Cavaliers to pump life into their flickering championship hopes.
Trailing from tip to buzzer, the defending champions were took a 120-90 spanking from Cleveland before a raging sellout crowd Wednesday night at Quicken Loans Arena. The Warriors now hold a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven NBA Finals.
The Warriors showed only flashes of excellence, mostly by the reserves, who dug out of a 20-point first-quarter hole (33-13) to get within eight (51-43) at the half before collapsing in the third quarter.
Four Warriors scored in double figures, with Stephen Curry putting in 19 points, Harrison Barnes tossing in 18, Andre Iguodala 11 and Klay Thompson 10.
The Warriors were outrebounded 52-32 and also committed 18 turnovers, off which the Cavs scored a whopping 34 points.
Star forward LeBron James led the Cavs with a game-high 32 points, while All-Star guard Kyrie Irving bounced back from miserable showings in Games 1 and 2 to pour in 30 points, 16 of which came in a scalding-hot first quarter.
The loss sent the Warriors to 0-4 in Game 3s this postseason and extended to five their overall losing streak in such postseason games, dating back to Game 3 of the 2015 NBA Finals.
The Cavaliers snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Warriors, dating back to Game 4 of the 2015 NBA Finals.
On a night when no Warrior truly shined, Barnes submitted some of his most respectable numbers of the postseason.
Barnes’ line: a postseason-high 18 points (7-of-11 from the floor, 2-of-5 beyond the arc), eight rebounds and two assists. He played 33 minutes and was minus-24.
This one came early, as the Cavs raced out to leads of 9-0, 23-8 and 33-13 in the first quarter and never really were threatened.
The Warriors got as close as seven (50-43) on a Shaun Livingston layup 29.5 seconds before halftime before Cleveland pushed its lead back to double digits early in the third quarter.
Warriors: G Klay Thompson sustained a L thigh contusion with 4:18 remaining in the first quarter, leaving the game. He returned with 7:18 remaining in the second quarter. F Kevon Looney (L hip surgery) was listed as out and, along with F James Michael McAdoo (healthy), placed on the inactive list.
Cavaliers: F Kevin Love (concussion) was listed as out and, along with F Sasha Kaun (healthy), placed on the inactive list.
Game 4 is set for Friday night at Quicken Loans Arena. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. PDT.