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Will the Warriors sweep, or will the Cavaliers live to fight another game?

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Golden State Warriors’ Kevin Durant celebrates with Stephen Curry, left, and Draymond Green (23) during the second half of Game 3 of basketball’s NBA Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Wednesday, June 6, 2018, in Cleveland. The Warriors defeated the Cavaliers 110-102 to take a 3-0 lead in the series. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

CLEVELAND, Ohio (Diya TV) – Stepping back after a dagger 33-feet 3-pointer with less than a minute left in the game, the ‘assassin’ as LeBron James called him, stood there savoring the moment as his teammates screamed in absolute joy. It was the Kevin Durant show. The Cavaliers setup an effective defense on Steph Curry, double teaming him and while he perhaps had the worst night of this finals series, it was Durant’s night to shine. With 43 points, 13 rebounds and 7 assists the 6’9″ soft-spoken Warrior along with his supporting cast, executed exactly what the Warriors team is known for – Strength in Numbers. Switching the plays from Curry to Durant, Coach Kerr, chalked in yet another victory for his franchise.

Game 3 was the Cavaliers’s big chance to make a comeback, but this loss lifted the Warriors to places hard to reach. A comeback from a 3-0 deficit has never been done in the playoffs. But the Cavaliers have shown before that they can make history, so this series is still far from over.

The Cavaliers came back from a 2-0 deficit in the 2016 NBA Finals to win the Championship in Game 7 and did not allow the Warriors sweep them last year. However this year the Cavaliers have made many changes to their roster, including bringing on point guard George Hill & the aggressive and fierce shooting guard Rodney Hood and these two made their presence known in Game 3, despite the loss.

For the Warriors, with Durant in his second season with Golden State, their team chemistry has only gotten stronger.
“When a guy like Kevin Durant is hitting these shots, it’s a joy to watch. It’s amazing to be a part of,” Klay Thompson said, about Durant’s 3-pointer. This three is similar to the one last Finals in Game 3, one that was also crucial to the win.

The first and second quarter performances by the Cavaliers were extraordinary, they moved the ball and stopped Curry from finding his rhythm. In addition to having a firing offense, led by Kevin Love and J.R. Smith, they were able to maintain some good defense and keep a double-digit lead for part of the game. Tyronn Lue said, “I thought we played a good first half. They’re going to make runs. That’s what this team does. To be up 6 at the half after being up 13 in that first half, but they’re going to make runs.” Lue decided to play Rodney Hood last night, after benching him for most of the Celtics series. Hood’s 15 points gave himself and the Cavaliers new life, creating offense where there was none.

Stephen Curry was 3-16 from the field, with only 11 points, a rare performance for this all star. Klay Thompson wasn’t able to score much either, with just 10 points. However, Shaun Livingston, Andre Iguodala, JaVale McGee, and Jordan Bell pitched in. Shaun Livingston has only missed 1 field goal this entire series, pitching in 8 points. Iguodala, although not 100%, showed championship experience and grit with 8 points and a plus of 14. Coach Kerr said, “Andre was really good. He gave us much-needed minutes.” McGee racked in 10 points in 14 minutes and Bell had 10 points in 12 minutes.
Its that kind of team performance that has been the Warriors key to success.

History in Making

Game 3 uncovered a few historic moments in the NBA. Durant, with his notable performance, finished with a career-best in a playoff game and the third-highest point total in Warriors history in the Finals. He also, Durant surpassed veterans Wilt Chamberlain and Elgin Baylor on the NBA’s all-time postseason points list, at 17th place with a total of 3,636 points. He has maintained his streak of scoring 25 or more points in his first 13 Finals games.
This has only been matched by Shaquille O’Neal (first 20) and Michael Jordan (first 21).

Draymond Green passed Wilt Chamberlain and became the leader of most rebounds in the postseason for Golden State.
He also made franchise history, with his 100th playoff game, the 2nd Warrior to join Klay Thompson in this record.

Despite the loss, James had his 10th triple-double in the Finals, extending his personal record. He is climbing up the Finals’ leaderboards, coming in second in the all-time steals and points, third in assists, and fifth in rebounds.
He recorded his 110th playoff game with 30 or more points, passing Michael Jordon (109) for the most in NBA postseason. He also logged his 10,000th playoff minute during tonight’s game, becoming the first player in NBA history to do so.

Game 4 A Sweep or a Bloody Fight?

The Warriors have maintained they know the Cavaliers are no easy task and taking it for granted was never an option. The Warriors should have lost Game 1 had it not been for the unbelievable error by JR Smith, so the greatness of this opportunity to sweep, is not lost on them. “It’s just going to be …it’s a trap game. You let your guard down. You show up thinking that we’re going to show up and win, right? Start making preparations for celebrations. You can’t do that. You have to go against the grain.”, said Shaun Livingston

And given how critical Game 4 is for the Cavaliers, Curry reminded everyone, “Understanding that Game 4 is going to be the toughest game that we’ve played in the series, to close it out. We’re going to need energy, effort, focus from every
guy that steps foot on the floor for 48 minutes.”

For the Cavaliers, this is do or die, on home court. There is no way they will allow the Warriors to sweep them in Cleveland and spray champagne in their locker rooms. Earlier today JR Smith said, “Just know that our backs are up against the wall and if we don’t win, it’s over. So if that’s not enough motivation for you, I don’t know what is. It’s The Finals, and we’ve got to come out and play the way we know how.”

Kevin love is keenly aware of what it will take, “For us, that margin of error is very small. We know that if we keep our coverages tight; we foul when we need to; we switch when we’re supposed to; we don’t let them slip to the rim, get those easy buckets that are deflating; and then on the offensive end in the third quarter we don’t get stagnant and play a full 48 minutes of moving the ball and playing our game, we’ll give ourselves a chance and we feel like we can win.”

As for James, his message is clear and simple, “You’ve just got to try to hunker down and get stops and try to create a little space.’

It all unfolds Friday night at 9PM Easter/6PM Pacific at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.

Basketball

Bucks bycott Game 5 in wake of Jacob Blake shooting, NBA season now in limbo

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Milwakee Bucks issue a statement

ORLANDO, Florida (Diya TV) — As the video of George Flyod’s killing spread across social media, the Black Lives Matter movement grew stronger & folks took to the streets to protest against police brutality. The NBA’s coronavirus-halted season resumed last month in Orlando. This Sunday, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, a police officer shot Jacob Blake, an unarmed Black man, seven times in the back.

Outraged, the Milwaukee Bucks players, decided to boycott Game 5 of the playoff series against the Orlando Magic. They forfiet the game, but the Magic refused to accept the Bucks’ forfeit and instead, both teams stood united, and the Bucks called Wisconsin’s Attorney General and Lieutenant Governor during “game time”.

The news spread quickly and other teams followed suit, notably the Rockets and Thunder, after Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul discussed the boycott.

Coincidently, four years ago today, former 49er Colin Kaepernick first kneeled during the national anthem. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell finally said that he that he wished they “had listened to Kaepernick earlier.” Kaepernick, who was essentially exiled from the league, has been receiving a lot of praise after today’s boycott.

The players took the “game time” to call the Attorney General Josh Kaul & Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes.

Twittersphere saw a barrage of reactions from players, coaches to former president Barack Obama

The 29-year-old, Jacob Blake was shot repeatedly in the back as he attempted to get into his car, while his three children sat inside. Protests have erupted in Kenosha since the shooting, with two people killed after a teenager opened fire on demonstrators with an assault rifle on Tuesday.

After the historic walkout, a players meeting was organized that continued past midnight in Orlando & sources say there was some frustration in the meeting among the players with the Bucks blindsiding everyone with their walk-out plan. Bucks’ guard, George Hill admitted he first sparked conversation pregame to boycott and his teammates supported.

As the teams voted on the status of the season, the LA Clippers & LA Lakers voted to boycott the NBA season, with LeBron James walking out of the meeting. He was soon followed by all the players from the LA teams.

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India, Pakistan spar over women’s rights in Kashmir

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India

NEW YORK (Diya TV)  — At the United Nations, both India and Pakistan’s representatives took shots at their counterpart over women’s rights. Islamabad’s outgoing envoy to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, said the women in Jammu and Kashmir were suffering due to the communication blackout in the state. India’s First Secretary to the UN Paulomi Tripathi said, without naming Pakistan, these “baseless statements” were ironic given the amount of honor killings that take place there annually.

Rajeev Majumdar is the new president of the Washington State Bar Association, becoming the first state bar president of South Asian descent in the United States.

For the first time, India entered the ranks of the top ten countries sending visitors to the United States, with tourists from India spending nearly $16 billion in the U.S. in 2018 alone.

And while the Kings and Pacers played two entertaining games in Mumbai, their legacy will include supporting five under-resourced schools in and around the region, outfitting them with Smart Classrooms, STEM training and new basketball courts.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Gandhi 150th birth anniversary noted around the world

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Birth Anniversary

NEW DELHI (Diya TV) —  Celebrations for Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary have been ongoing for the past year, but culminated with a ceremony in New Delhi featuring Prime Minister Modi and another in Washington at the Library of Congress. And France’s government worked with the Indian Embassy there to issue a stamp in honor of his birth anniversary.

US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal are meeting this week to continue the US-India discussion on trade and investment.

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb came to New Delhi to strengthen ties between the Hoosier State and India. Infosys has already made a large commitment there. Holcomb is part of a large delegation of Americans now heading Mumbai to take in the first-ever NBA preseason games in India featuring the Indiana Pacers and the Sacramento Kings.

Bollywood turned Hollywood actor Anupam Kher came to the Bay Area to keynote the Akshay Patra annual fundraising gala that helps feed children in India a hot meal during the school year.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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