Iman Shumpert cramped up after Game 2, starting role possible
Even with the cramping, Shumpert’s play, coupled with J.R. Smith‘s disappearing act in the series thus far, has the Cavs considering a lineup change at shooting guard for Game 3, the source said.
His presence in the starting lineup would be to help find some defensive dependability against the Warriors, but that hasn’t been the case. His number one task will be to slow down Kevin Durant, who is averaging 35.5 points through the first two games of the series.
Meanwhile, J.R. Smith hasn’t been an offensive spark plug scoring just three points on a combined 1-of-6 shooting in the first two games of the NBA Finals. He went scoreless in Game 2 on 0-for-2 shooting with both attempts coming from beyond the arc in just 14 minutes played.
Despite these defensive issues, a change in the starting lineup could help the Cavaliers find a more effective lineup while bringing a different approach to limiting the Warriors’ offense. It has been a tough task, but they will have the opportunity to get back in the series with the next two games at the Quicken Loans Arena.
There are also a few days until Game 3 that should allow for them to garner a renewed sense of focus on the defensive end that could go a long way in helping the Cavaliers turn it around.