Golden State Warriors without starters beat Cavaliers 120-114

On a late fourth quarter attempt to comeback, Cavs couldn't hold on
Darius Garland, Jonathan Kuminga
Posted at 11:31 AM, Jan 21, 2023

CLEVELAND — Friday night, the Cavaliers took on the defending NBA Champions–Golden State Warriors– at RocketMortage Field House. Both teams were coming off losses--Cavs from Memphis and the Warriors from Boston.

Just hours before tip-off it was officially announced that the Warriors were going to sit out their starters; Andre Iguodala - Klay Thompson - Andrew Wiggins - Draymond Green - Stephen Curry.

Donovan Mitchell was also ruled out due to a groin strain from earlier on in the week.

While not having the regular starting lineup for the Warriors, one would think the Cavaliers would have taken advantage, but they failed to do so.

In the first half, both teams were going back and forth, which kept the score pretty close. Both teams offensively were looking good as well. But towards the end of the half, the Cavs began to lack on their defensive skills. The Warriors had managed to hit seven threes while the Cavs only hit four. The Cavs seemed to have zoned out of the game which gave the Warriors time to shine.

Coming back out from the locker room, the Cavs didn’t improve much. Golden State started to throw up threes from all around the arc, they upped a 20-point lead by the six-minute mark in the third– the Cavs did try to break that, but the Warriors kept a double-point lead throughout.

Now when all hope was lost, the Cavaliers surprised everyone. The Cavs picked up the pace and started to put in some work. Darius Garland especially was giving it his all by taking smart shots that he knew would go in and was able to assist his teammates during plays.

At the two-minute mark, the score was the closest it had been since the first quarter–the Cavs were only down by four. But the Warriors shortly after scored a three-pointer and tightened up their defense versus the Cavs until the end, ultimately securing the win.

The Cavs gave up on many chances throughout the night that could have affected the outcome. But Golden State overall played the better game and showed everyone that even their bench is full of sharp three-point shooters.

Garland: 31 points, nine assists, two rebounds
Caris LeVert: 22 points, five rebounds, two assists

Jordan Poole: 32 points, three rebounds, two assists
Ty Jerome: 22 points, eight assists

The Cavaliers will now host the Milwaukee Bucks Saturday night, tip-off will be at 7:30 p.m.

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