Kevin Durant Took Stephen Curry’s First NBA Finals MVP Award Away In Game 3

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

The Warriors and Cavaliers will play another game or two, but this thing is over.

And Kevin Durant ended it.

If his (practically) season-ending dagger looked familiar, it’s because he did the same thing last year.

KD dropped 43 points on scalding 15-of-23 shooting to lead Golden State in Game 3 of the NBA Finals with his fellow Dubs stars struggling; no other Warrior scored more than 11.

“That was amazing what he did out there tonight,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said after the 110-102 win. “I don’t think anybody in the world can hit those but him. He was incredible.”

This series has been over for about 23 months now. The only real intrigue was seeing whether Stephen Curry, the man most responsible for the Warriors’ rise, would claim his first NBA Finals MVP during the Warriors’ third championship.

But in Game 3 he had probably the worst Finals performance of his career, going 3-of-16 from the field for 10 points and cratering his series shooting percentage to a paltry 38.5. percent.

Entering the night, Curry was averaging an efficient 31 points per game in these Finals. Now he’s sitting at 24.3, having watched KD push his average from 26 to 31.7 points per game.

With the efficiency Durant has chambered to this point (55.9 percent from the field, 47.4 percent from three, and 95.2 percent from the free-throw line), Curry would almost have to double the forward’s Game 3 effort in Game 4 to even have a chance at consideration for the award. Fortunately for him, he doesn’t seem the type to sweat over awards as long as the team is winning.

So the trophy’s KD’s now; his presence saved the Warriors from the indignity of winning the championship in five games rather than four.