NBA: Warriors now one win from consecutive titles

Warriors guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 63 points to put the Warriors one win away from the NBA championship. Photo / Getty
Warriors guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 63 points to put the Warriors one win away from the NBA championship. Photo / Getty

The Golden State Warriors are just one victory away from back-to-back NBA championships after overcoming a rugged Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Warriors won 108-97 in Cleveland on Friday to take a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series.

The Warriors can claim the title on their home court in Oakland in Monday's (Tuesday NZT) game five.

After ordinary shooting performances in the first three games, the Warriors' best shooters, NBA MVP Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, bounced back with 38 and 25 points respectively.

"The work is not done," Curry said.

"I'm glad I showed up a little bit, but we still have some work to do."

The Cavaliers' Kyrie Irving was also on a mission, scoring 34 points despite injuring his right thumb in the second quarter.

It was the most competitive game of the series, after three blowouts.

The Cavaliers, attempting to ride a 20,562-strong home crowd, were desperate to tie up the series and physically challenged the Warriors.

The referees were reluctant to call fouls, leading to a battle around the basket, with the Warriors' Australian centre Andrew Bogut one of the casualties.

In the third quarter, as the Warriors were challenging the Cavaliers, Bogut was airborne and set for an alley-oop dunk when Cavaliers' big man Tristan Thompson pulled the Australian down.

Bogut landed on the court face down, had to go to the bench and did not return to the game.

Bogut had one block, set screens for his guards and altered numerous cavaliers' shots. He was scoreless and had just one rebound from 10 minutes.

The Cavaliers' back-up Australian point guard Matthew Dellavedova also did not have much impact with just two points in less than five minutes.

Dellavedova, often tagged as a dirty player, was on the receiving end of a hard foul himself when Warriors forward Harrison Barnes struck him across the face in the second quarter.

In the final three minutes the Cavaliers' LeBron James and Warriors' Draymond Green had to be separated after a skirmish.

James had 25 points, 13 rebounds and nine assists.

History is against the Cavaliers, with no team managing to claim the title after falling 3-1 down in the finals.

- AAP

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