CLEVELAND: An overpowering Golden State Warriors squad captured its third National Basketball Association crown in four seasons late Friday, routing Cleveland 108-85 to complete a sweep in the best-of-seven NBA Finals.
Stephen Curry scored 37 points and Kevin Durant was named the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player for the second consecutive year after 20 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists — his first finals triple double.
Warriors inflicted the first 4-0 NBA Finals blanking since Cavaliers were swept by San Antonio in 2007. It was the fourth year in a row Warriors and Cavaliers met in the finals, Golden State winning in 2015 and the past two years.
Golden State claimed the sixth crown in club history, matching the Chicago Bulls for third on the all-time list. Warriors won in 1947 and 1956 when based in Philadelphia plus 1975, 13 years after their move to the San Francisco Bay area, and the latest run.
Cavaliers star LeBron James, playing his eighth consecutive finals, scored 23 points, grabbed seven rebounds and passed off eight assists on Friday but fell to 3-6 in the finals for his career.
At 33, James might have played his final game for Cavaliers. He can opt out of his contract and become a free agent next month. After leaving Cleveland with broken hearts in 2010 for Miami, James might leave the city again — with a broken hand.
Curry, who set an NBA Finals record with nine 3-pointers in game two, hit 12-of-27 shots from the field and 7-of-15 from 3-point range.
A James slam dunk capped a 14-4 Cavs run to open the second quarter, putting Cleveland ahead 39-38, but Golden State answered with a 11-4 run and stretched the half-time lead to 61-52. The Cavaliers would come no closer in the second half.
Golden State outscored Cleveland 25-13 in the third quarter, James managing only four points, and Warriors rolled through the final minutes.
James was removed with 4:03 remaining and congratulated Warriors before taking a seat on the bench.