Submitted by Jim Hurley on Monday, June 6, 2016 at 9:15 AM
THE NBA FINALS REPORT - WARRIORS SHOWING HOOPS WORLD THEY'RE "THE GREATEST"...
BASEBALL NEWS/NOTES: WHAT'S STRAIGHT AHEAD THIS WEEK
Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.
Sure, the late/great Muhammad Ali owned that catchy phrase during his brilliant boxing career and anyone that watched TV or read the newspapers/internet this past weekend came upon that brilliant line more than a few times following Ali's death late last Friday night.
But on the hardwood this past Sunday night, well, the NBA's Golden State Warriors did their own bit of bobbing-and-weaving en route to a non-competitive 110-77 Game 2 win over the 6-point underdog Cleveland Cavaliers in this year's NBA Finals.
Should anyone really be surprised?
After all, the Warriors are now - get this - 10-2 ATS (against the spread) at home in this year's post-season ... they were 3-0 spreadwise versus the Houston Rockets in the opening round; 2-1 ATS in second-round action against the Portland Trail Blazers; 3-1 against the numbers in the Western Conference Finals against the Oklahoma City Thunder; and now they're a glitzy 2-0 ATS versus the Cavaliers in this year's NBA Finals.
Folks, that's sayin' something when you consider that the Warriors have been double-digit home betting favorites three times this post-season and favorites of 6-or-more points on a dozen different occasions this playoff campaign.
Golden State's plus a tidy $780 based on $100 per-play home wagers this post-season and now you have to wonder if the Warriors will even have to play another home game this month - or will Steve Kerr's uber-confident team simply sweep Cleveland away with the next two games in Ohio on Wednesday and Friday nights?
The Game 2 blowout in Oakland - sparked by Draymond Green's game-high 28 points (included five trifectas as the Cavs inexplicably left 'em open for a bunch of jumpers) - had the Cavs with that dreaded deer-in-the-headlights look following a 20-to-2 scoring spree in the second quarter but can someone please tell us what the Cavs worked on during the two off days following the 104-89 loss in Game 1?
No doubt first-year Cleveland head coach Tyronn Lue has been exposed the first two games of this series and the effort - dubbed "pathetic" by ESPN's chatter-box Stephen A. Smith - was awful but take nothing away from the Warriors who shot 54.3 percent from the field (that's 44-of-81 FGs) and let's not forget that the reigning champs slaughtered the Cavs on the boards (46-to-34) and in the overall hustle department.
Guess you heard Cleveland's LeBron James (just 19 points and 7 turnovers) complain in the post-game presser about all the turnovers (17 of 'em for the Cavs) and the inability to capture the "50/50 balls" and, folks, that's just effort.
The Warriors played with lots of it; the Cavs with none and let's not hear any crying about Cleveland F Kevin Love and his apparent concussion or the fact shooting guard J.R. Smith is MIA in this series with 8 points scored in 69 game minutes ... ugh!
One thing we know about the Game 2 rout ... it was no "Rumble in the Jungle".
Just a good, old-fashioned KO, right champ?
Now, here's the Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals series in game chart form (all home teams are in CAPS below):
|6-2||GOLDEN ST.||- 6||Cleveland||104-89|
|6-5||GOLDEN ST||- 6||Cleveland||110-77|
Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers and Bloggers will continue to rake in the profits in this year's NBA Finals as we roll on big-time this post-season! Go online right here or call our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 each/every day of these NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers (Game 3 is Wednesday night) and cash in. Plus get all the Major-League Baseball winners every day when you check with us ... America's #1 Handicapper is gonna stay hot all month long!
THE BASEBALL REPORT
Alright, so it's a really big sports week straight ahead with NBA Finals action, the Belmont Stakes on Saturday and, of course, lots of meaningful Major-League Baseball.
Here's what really interests us ...
It sure looks as if both the Pittsburgh Pirates (30-26) and the St. Louis Cardinals (30-27) are playing for a National League Wild Card ... already.
Yes, sir, the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs enter the new week 9.5 games ahead of the Bucs and 10 full games over the rival Redbirds and so all their gams become extra-important in the scheme of things.
The Pirates begin the week by hosting the New York Mets for three games and won't it be a blast to watch Pittsburgh LHP Jon Niese go against his old mates tonight (and that includes former Buc 2B Neil Walker)?
Meanwhile, the Cardinals head into Cincinnati for Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday games after winning the final two games of a three-game home set against San Francisco.
St. Loo hit four home runs in a nine at-bat span in last Saturday's win and then exploded without any long balls for a four-run sixth inning in Sunday night's 6-3 against the Giants.
We will have plenty of winners all week long here at Jim Hurley's Network but gut feel is the Cards may have turned the beat around (though they'll be laying some hefty road prices in Cincy) while the Buccos could be playing tight, so you may not wish to back 'em against a Mets team that goes with LHP Steven Matz, RHP Jacob deGrom and RHP Noah Syndergaard this week.
Finally, it's been our contention for years that MLB teams naturally hit righthanded pitching better than they hit lefties but how about a shout-out to the Miami Marlins and the Chicago Cubs (of course) who are 8-2 and 12-5, respectively, against lefty hurlers so far this season.
Amazing when you consider Miami RF Giancarlo Stanton has been awful this year (had a "mental health" day off against Mets' RHP Matt Harvey on Sunday) and so the Fish have been strong versus LHPs without much help from their multi-millionaire cleanup hitter while the Cubs - who happened to lose 3-2 on Sunday to Arizona LHP Patrick Corbin - actually are playing .710 ball against righty starters and "only" .706 ball against southpaw starters.
NOTE: There's more NBA Finals coverage in the next edition of Jim Sez!