2. Outplay Golden State’s Second Unit
Although many will point to Curry’s fourth quarter brilliance as the reason for Golden State’s Game 4 victory, the Warriors’ unsung bench also played a vital role. The second unit sprung a 9-2 run early in the fourth quarter to give Golden State a 5-point lead before the unanimous MVP even touched the floor.
A Harrison Barnes three and a couple of signature mid-range jumpers from Shaun Livingston are what we have grown accustomed to seeing from Golden State’s bench mob, but once again, Green’s absence will be heavily felt here. Without Draymond, Golden State will have to go to Leandro Barbosa or Harrison Barnes to help Livingston with the playmaking duties. With a team like the Warriors that are so heavily team-oriented, when one cog is missing, the engine doesn’t run nearly as smoothly.
Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert and Matthew Dellavedova have not had an imprint on any of the four games thus far, and Cleveland will need at least one or two of them to make some big plays if they are to win Game 5.