The Cavs blew a great opportunity to steal Game 1 of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena, as after overtime rolled around, it was all downhill from there.
LeBron James dropped a ridiculous 51 points in the game on 19-of-32 shooting, but a self-inflicted hand injury slowed him down in the final three contests of the series. In fact, it was almost as if the Warriors knew about the injury, judging by how they were guarding him — forcing him to settle for jumpers.
That’s because they did.
ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith reported on Monday that many media members knew about James’ hand injury, with the news trickling down to the Warriors as well.
“This was not breaking news,” Smith said on First Take. “A lot of us had heard what happened after Game 1. So we knew that his hand was hurt, and I’m telling you the Warriors knew that his hand was hurt.”
This is particularly interesting because now it raises questions about which media member(s) may have leaked the bit of news to the Warriors. LeBron James and his camp are very tight-lipped, and leaks rarely happen involving him, unless his inner-circle orders them.
Still, it could have been anyone, including an Oracle staffer, given that it was a home game for the Warriors. And at the end of the day, the injury may have helped the Warriors a bit, but let’s be honest, after they came back to win Game 1, no one was beating the defending champions in the series. At best, the Cavs could’ve possibly managed to win Game 3 or Game 4, probably the former, given how ineffective Steph Curry and Klay Thompson were until late in the game.
The takeaway here is that nothing is private in this day and age — even things that happen behind closed doors in the locker room.