Kevin Durant Returns to the NBA Finals in Exclusive Nikes

Golden State crushed LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers 113-91 in game one in Oakland, California, on Friday (NZ time).

Steph Curry and Kevin Durant combined for 66 points as the Golden State Warriors delivered an early statement in the National Basketball Association finals.

Here are the three biggest takeaways from the Warriors' win over the Cavaliers in Game 1 of the 2017 NBA Finals at Oracle Arena in Oakland.

Struggling with turnovers and defensive communication, the defending NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers are counting on learning from their mistakes to fight their way back in the NBA Finals.

Golden State Warriors' forward Kevin Durant has taken a liking to the extra media coverage and expectations playing for a title contender.

Durant had six dunks in the first half alone to match his most ever in a game, Curry hit six 3-pointers and the Cavaliers looked like the team that stumbled down the stretch in the second half of the season. But who could have imagined the Warriors shooting a collective 3-for-13 from three-point range in the first half and still taking control of the game? The Warriors have the big lead even on off nights for Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.

"Golden State wasn't this good (back then)", Turner Sports analyst Kenny Smith said. The Cavaliers were within reach of Boston, capping off their season as the second place team of the conference, going 51-31.

Stephen Curry overwhelmed Cleveland with a sterling third quarter on a night he finished with 28 points, 10 assists and six rebounds. But the Celtics did manage to rebound and earn the top seed in the East. Isaiah Thomas averaged 29.5 points for the Celtics vs. the Cavaliers. Meaning the Warriors scored half their points near the basket, where, in theory, it's easier to score. James scored 28 points, but only nine came in the second half, and he committed eight turnovers.

LeBron James hailed the impact of Kevin Durant after the Golden State Warriors star dominated the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals opener.

It all added up to an entertaining but not unexpected Game 1 result.

Throughout his career, Durant displayed class, and that has not changed since joining Golden State.

The Cavaliers also turned the ball over four more times, giving them 16 to that point of the game. Kyrie Irving has 17 points and Kevin Love has 12 rebounds for the Cavaliers.

Durant had 23 points in the half, while James had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Part of what allowed Cleveland to surge back in the 2016 Finals was the repetitive use of Curry's defender as a screener for LeBron James. SG Ray Allen is the all-time leader with 385. In all, 11 players in the series have been All-Stars in their careers, tying the 1983 Finals between Philadelphia and the Lakers for the most in National Basketball Association history. A 3-1 lead! The Warriors blew a 3-1 lead! "Like I said, we had 20 turnovers, and there's no way you're going to win a ball game having 20 turnovers against this team and on the road". That's where the Warriors are deadliest, on the run, and in Game 1 Cleveland couldn't slow down the express.

"We talked about it before the game and Steve (Kerr) suggested we try and get the ball in (Durant's) hands right away and put him in a position where he can attack downhill", interim head coach Mike Brown said.

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  • Julie Sanders