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NBA Finals, Warriors vs. Cavs preview: Golden State faces gut check in Game 4

Photo Credit: Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors face a series deficit for the first time in the 2015 NBA playoffs when the team will face the Cleveland Cavaliers on the road on Thursday night in a near must-win game. 

Down 2-1 in the best-of-seven series, the Warriors are heading in facing LeBron James in exceptional form — even for him. Ohio’s native son has scored 123 points in three NBA Finals games, eclipsing the previous record of 122 by Rick Barry. His prolific scoring is exactly what the Cavs need while missing both Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving to season-ending injuries. 

On the other side, the Warriors are getting sub-par production from league MVP Stephen Curry. The Baby-Faced Assassin hasn’t been the same since suffering a hard fall in the Western Conference Finals against the Houston Rockets. He started to come out of a miserable funk toward the end of Game 3 by making five three-pointers and putting up 17 points in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough to come away with a key road win. 

Draymond Green will need to step up for Golden State to win a tough road matchup as well. The forward was just 2-of-10 from the field and finished with seven points. To make matters worse, Harrison Barnes was 0-for-8 and finished with zero points. With Curry drawing all the attention, both players will continue to get open looks, and they’ll have to capitalize. 

This is as close to a must-win game as it gets for the Warriors. 

Game Time: Thursday, June 11, 2015, 9 p.m. ET

Venue: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio

TV: ABC

Radio: ESPN Radio

NBA fans know how strong the Warriors are at Oracle Arena, but they will need a win in Cleveland to capture the Larry O’Brien trophy. Hipmunk.com offers flights to and from Cleveland for Games 4 and 6, as well as hotels in Cleveland, including options with rates starting below $100 per night.

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Michael C. Jones is the managing editor and founder of Sports Out West and a Southern California-based sports journalist. His credits include Yahoo Sports and Bleacher Report, among others.
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