OAKLAND, California (AP) – Golden State’s quest for back-to-back championships after a record-setting season moved a step closer as the Warriors ran away in the second half to beat Cleveland 110-77 on Sunday, taking a 2-0 lead in the NBA Finals.
Draymond Green scored 28 points and Stephen Curry added 18 for the Warriors, who led by eight at halftime before turning it into a blowout.
Of the previous 31 teams to lead the title series 2-0, 28 went on to win the title.
“There’s no point in celebrating or jumping up and down saying, ‘Look at us.’ We’re two games away from winning a championship, but we still have to go out and get the job done,” Curry said. “It’s a trap to think that we’ve figured things out, that we have the perfect formula to beat Cleveland and they have no chance in the series. That’s not how we’re supposed to think.”
Cleveland lost Kevin Love in the third quarter to a concussion, putting him in doubt for Game 3 on Wednesday in Cleveland.
LeBron James had a team-best 19 points for the Cavaliers, who have now lost seven consecutive games to the Warriors.
It’s the first time James has ever lost seven straight to the same opponent.
The 33-point win was the Warriors’ most lopsided ever in a finals game.
“They just beat us,” LeBron James said. “We didn’t win anything. No points of the game did we beat them in anything.”
Klay Thompson got hot after halftime to finish with 17 points and five assists as Golden State became the first team to go ahead 2-0 in the finals since the Los Angeles Lakers in 2009 against Orlando.
“What we’ve done the last few years, everybody, every night has an impact,” Curry said. “You don’t know where it’s going to come from any given night. We’ve got to keep our focus and our edge and hopefully get two more.”
The NBA said Love experienced dizziness early in the second half and left for the locker room to be re-examined, then was placed in the NBA’s concussion protocol. The league said he didn’t exhibit any symptoms before then, even after taking an elbow to the back of the head from Harrison Barnes in the second quarter and going down for several minutes before returning following a timeout. He made a baseline 3-pointer for the Cavs’ first basket in nearly 5-1/2 minutes.
After a scoreless first quarter when he missed all five shots but had five assists, James scored 14 of his 19 points in the second and also finished with nine assists and eight rebounds, but seven turnovers. James’ teams had won nine straight postseason Game 2s after losing the series opener dating back to 2008.