OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- As gifted as LeBron James and Kyrie Irving are with the ball in their hands and one defender to beat, that is not what got the Cleveland Cavaliers to a second straight NBA Finals.
The Cavs are at their best when the ball is humming around the perimeter, forcing defenses to scramble and creating open looks from 3-point range when one just happens to be a step slow closing out.
The ball movement and 3-point shooting ground to a halt in Game 1 of the rematch against Golden State, with the Warriors swallowing the Cavaliers up with a switch-everything defense.
A day after the dispiriting 104-89 defeat, the Cavaliers spoke about the need for injecting that movement and energy back into their offense while also acknowledging that the defending champions make that task exceedingly difficult to execute.
The Warriors' versatility allows them to switch pick-and-rolls and rotate on defense better than any team in the league. And even though James and Irving are potent off the dribble and attacking the basket, they would much rather see the Cavaliers isolate the two stars on one side of the floor rather than have them swing the ball from side to side to spread the defense and get open looks for all their 3-point shooters.
The Cavs and Warriors tip off at 8 p.m. Sunday on ABC2.