Even though none of the games have been close, this installment of the NBA Finals has been one of the most compelling in years, as the off-court drama and on-court momentum shifts and crazy stats have provided more than enough storlylines.
We take a deeper look at some of the relatively unknown but shocking statistics that may give some insight as to how Game 7 will unfold.
Steph Curry’s production with and without Tristan Thompson on the floor
Although the Cavaliers have often been questioned about the contract that they gave to Thompson, he’s paying them back in a big way in this year’s Finals.
On top of his relentlessness on the offensive glass and impressive numbers in Game 6, TT’s presence has proven to be Curry’s kryptonite.
With Tristan on the court, the league’s MVP is shooting a measly 38% from the field, and an un-Curry like 39% from 3, all while carrying an eye-popping -24 plus/minus.
With Thompson off the court, however, Steph has been his regular-season self, shooting an impressive 55% from the floor and a scorching 58% from distance.
TT’s presence is key to containing the MVP, who looks due to break out in Game 7.
Kevin Love’s Game 6 +/-
While all the other Cavalier starters enjoyed plus/minuses over 20, Kevin Love posted an embarrassing -6, a very concerning stat considering his team won the game by 14.
To add insult to injury, Love’s obvious replacement, if Tyronn Lue chooses that course of action, is Richard Jefferson. He posted a magnificent +15 off the bench, by far the best showing off the pine by a Cavalier player.
Love has obviously been a non-factor in these years’ Finals, and actually seems to be hurting his teams’ cause. Starting Richard Jefferson would be a bold move, but at this point it looks like the right one.
Andre Iguodala’s Game 6 +/-
Even though most of the Golden State players produced hideous plus/minuses on Thursday, the reigning Finals MVP took the crown as the worst.
The normally reliable Iggy posted a forgetful -25 in Game 6, and was clearly hampered by what seemed to be a pretty serious back injury.
This picture describes the kind of night that Iguodala had:
Andre is obviously a key piece to the Warriors’ puzzle, and if his back acts up as it did in Game 6, the defending champs are already behind the 8-ball.
So while all the eyes may be on LeBron and Steph, the title may very well be won because of the performances of influential role players like Thompson and Iguodala, who have already made their presence felt in a big way this series.
With this game being hyped up as the biggest in NBA history, the storylines are set. This hectic NBA Finals is about to come to its dramatic conclusion, and we’re in for some kind of show.