Flawless shot: Durant's late 3 gives Warriors 3-0 Finals lead

The Golden State Warriors have beaten the Cleveland Cavaliers to take a 3-0 stranglehold on the NBA Finals.

Game 4 is here Friday night.

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) celebrates with teammates after the Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 118-113 in Game 3 of basketball's NBA Finals in Cleveland, Wednesday, June 7, 2017.

NOTES: Cavaliers F LeBron James passed Sam Jones (1,143 points), Bill Russell (1,151), and Elgin Baylor (1,161) for fourth place on the NBA Finals all-time scoring list in the first half.

If not for their meltdown a year ago, the Warriors, whose record-setting 73-win season got lost in the Finals aftermath, would be looking for a third straight crown. The Warriors now hold a 3-0 series lead, looking unbeatable at this point.

When the first half was over, James had 27 points and the Warriors had committed 12 turnovers, and yet Golden State still led 67-61. Actually, that wasn't hard to do, given that he scored 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting, while the rest of the roster combined for 20 points while hitting just four of 24 shots.

LeBron James had 39 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists for the Cavaliers, and Kyrie Irving added 38 points.

The Golden State Warriors were determined to start Game 3 of the 2017 NBA Finals in Cleveland better than they did last season. It certainly reflects what Kerr said - he knows it's his moment. I've been working on that shot my whole life.

He is also coming off a Game 2 performance where he recorded 33 points, 13 rebounds, six assists, a playoff career-high-tying five blocks and three steals, making him the first player ever to notch those numbers in any postseason game. It wasn't our smartest game that we have played all year, but it was maybe our toughest in terms of our ability to just hang in there.

The Warriors have now won 15 games in a row.

Smith recovered from a poor first two games to score 16 for the Cavs.

This story has been corrected to show that the Pittsburgh Penguins had 14 straight postseason wins in only one season, not two.

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