Warriors hard on selves after squandering late double digit lead over Cavs: 'We gave them a gift'
Klay Thompson's Warriors were up 14 with nine minutes to play before LeBron James and the Cavs fought back. AP

“WE lost that game. We gave them a gift.”

This was the forlorn response of Golden State star Klay Thompson on Christmas Day after the Warriors lostl, 109-108, against the Cleveland Cavaliers, the teams' first meeting after the historic 2016 NBA Finals.

The Dubs were up by 14 in the fourth quarter when the Cavs staged a fightback that was capped off by Kyrie Irving’s game-winning shot against Thompson.

[See Irving jumper with three seconds left caps Cavs rally from 14 down to beat Warriors]

“We shot ourselves on the foot. We were up 14 in the fourth quarter. We should have to be solid, not turn the ball over, help ourselves on defense and win the game,” said Thompson in a post-game ESPN interview.

“Instead we were throwing the ball all over the court, leaving open shooters and not playing our brand of ball. So you better be mad. I don’t care if it’s Christmas day or any day you’re losing. The time you blow a 14-point lead, man, it pisses you off.”

Thompson’s sentiment was shared by his fellow Warriors who tried to put a silver lining on the setback. 

[See Familiar ending for Warriors as another Kyrie Irving clutch shot lifts Cavaliers to victory]

Kevin Durant said the team was “upset” but will put the loss behind them.

“We should’ve won that game. We had that game in our hands. But nobody’s sobbing in the locker room. We move on.”

The normally volatile Draymond Green admitted his part in the defeat and put up a brave face.           

“We turned the ball over and we didn’t execute down the stretch. I made a couple of timely turnovers that we can’t have. We take care of the ball we win that game.”

Green added they “didn’t do the necessary things to do to win that game. They made plays down the stretch and lesson learned.  We gotta be better, we been to the Finals two years in a row. We know what it takes.”

Steve Kerr gave his honest assessment of what transpired and how the team can benefit from it.

“We had control of the game and we did not execute at all in the fourth quarter. It’s a great tape to look at. It’ll be quite valuable for us to look at that tape because we let it slip away.”


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