The 27-year-old failed to match the speed and tenacity of the Warriors
around the court, allowing Curry and Draymond Green to capitalise with
their deadly accuracy.
Love has not lived up to expectations since his
arrival from the Minnesota Timberwolves last season, although he is
more than capable of delivering top-quality displays, having been named
an All-Star three times in his eight-year career.
The Cavaliers were robbed of Irving’s services in the opening match of
the 2015 finals as he sustained a dislocated kneecap in overtime,
ruling him out of action for several months.
The point guard slowly got back to form over the course of the campaign
without finding his peak condition, although he clicked into gear once
the post-season began.
Irving averaged 27.5 points per game in the Cavaliers’ whitewash of the
Detroit Pistons, while he played a crucial role in guiding his team
past the Toronto Raptors in the Conference Finals.
The 24-year-old bested MVP Steph Curry in game one of the championship
finals with 26 points at Oracle Arena, only to see Shaun Livingston
come off the Warriors bench to snatch victory away from Cleveland.
He put in an underwhelming 10-point display in game
two as Curry and Klay Thompson took command of the court, leaving the
Cavaliers staring down the barrel of a second-straight defeat in the
Lue needs his top three players to deliver over the next two matches to
keep the series alive and put the pressure back on the Warriors.
However, they will have to be flawless to stop Golden State’s pursuit
of a perfect campaign, following their record-breaking 73-9 regular
season record, to ensure that another year does not end in the ultimate