Newly crowned MVP Stephen Curry has been a major disappointment in the opening three games of the NBA Championship series. His team, Golden State Warriors, started with a victory but have since lost two games in a row to Cleveland Cavaliers. The latter could be crowned as the champions if they win the next two games. Betfair, though, backs Golden State in the NBA final title odds to recover from the latest setback of a 96-91 defeat on Tuesday night to win the title at 4/5. It is slightly better than the even odds provided for Cleveland to get their first NBA Championship series title.
Curry has been poor in the last two games against Cleveland and some will be questioning his status as the reigning holder of the MVP award. He has been consistently outshined by James, who has won this title four times in his career. The last of those titles came in 2013. More importantly, he has not been crowned as the NBA Finals MVP since 2013. This could all change in the near future, as James managed to secure an average of more than 40 points in the opening three games.
A title with Cleveland will be extremely special for the 30-year-old, who made it clear during last summer that he prioritised his love for Cleveland over several big-money offers.
The closest Cleveland came to winning the title was back in 2007 when a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of San Antonio Spurs deprived them of the title. Now, though, they seem to have a much better chance of overcoming this disappointment. A 2-1 lead in the series following the latest victory on Tuesday means a lot to the team with one of the best players in the game has seen – LeBron James.
James was part of the Cleveland team from 2003 to 2010 but failed to lead them to a Championship series title. He was crowned as the MVP towards his later years in the team. It is after his move to Miami heat in 2010 that he started having a real influence on the team. It is just under 12 months since James opted to return to the club where his professional career started, but it is turning out into a great campaign for the 30-year-old.
In the third game, Curry showed signs of returning to form after managing 17 points in the fourth quarter alone. This was rather impressive considering that he had managed only 27 points in the whole game. The final flourish, though, came too late for Golden State after the narrow defeat means that they head into the next game with a lot of pressure on their shoulders. Should Cleveland continued his impressive form, then they could move within the game away from the title itself.
James already has achieved a landmark tally of 123 points, which is more than any other player has managed at this stage of the NBA Championship series. If he manages to maintain a 40 point average over the next couple of games, it would be a remarkable achievement for a player who almost has nothing to prove. Much of Curry’s struggles have been attributed to the impressive fill-in guard, Matthew Dellavedova.
Dellavedova made a huge impact in the second game, which went into overtime, but he managed to steal the limelight in the third game. Apart from having a spectacular defensive performance, he managed to get 20 points himself. Along with James, Dellavedova contributed 78 out of the 96 points scored by Cleveland on the night either directly or through assists.
Curry seemed to run out of ideas with the impressive Dellavedova marshalling him. After the game, the MVP admitted that he needs to be more aggressive in order to overcome the 24-year-old. It needs to come soon since Golden State on the verge of going 3-1 down in the series. The 1st half Money Line odds from Betfair places Golden State at 7/10, while Cleveland are placed further back at 11/10. The former are still backed at 15/8 to win the series 4-3, while a 4-2 win in favour of Cleveland is given odds of 11/4.