The Cleveland Cavaliers put together a historic night in Game 4, and we’re back to a 3-1 series lead for the Golden State Warriors.

It started when the Cavaliers dropped 49 points in the first quarter. It continued when they entered halftime with 86. Those 86 points not only set an NBA Finals record but a postseason record as well. The Warriors also threw together an explosive half with 68 points of their own, and the 154 combined points were the most ever in a first half. Most of Cleveland’s points came from the long ball, and they buried 13 threes to — you guessed it — set a first half Finals record.

Cleveland wasn’t able to keep up that scoring pace, and they recorded just 51 points in the second half. But they got ahead of the Warriors and never looked back.

Also Read: Cavaliers ‘Agitated’ By Curry’s Squat Celebration

Watching the game was just as arduous as it was enthralling. The NBA’s official scorebook says the game ran for 2:51, but it felt way longer than that. There was a myriad of stoppages throughout the contest, which included Draymond Green getting ejected after picking up his second technical foul only to have it rescinded because the one he got in the first half was actually on Steve Kerr, even though the scorer’s table gave it to Green.

There was another instance, but this involved LeBron James and Kevin Durant. Durant attacked the basket, got fouled by Kevin Love and made the officials go to the monitor and see if it was flagrant. Love did hit Durant in the head, but it was an obvious play on the ball. While that was going on, James and Durant met around half court to have a few words, and it was around that point that the consensus was the officials were starting to lose control of the game. Later in the same quarter, Iman Shumpert and Zaza Pachulia had an issue. Pachulia, who already has a target on his back for his involvement in Kawhi Leonard’s injury, took a page out of Green’s book and swung at Shumpert’s manhood while the two were battling for a loose ball.

It’s the Finals and bodies are going to fly. On that play, Kyle Korver and James also fell with Pachulia. The officials blew their whistles, and Zaza’s first swing wasn’t out of the ordinary because he just wanted Shumpert to get off of him. After swiping right-to-left, Pachulia came back with a left-to-right hook like he was pretending to be Ali in his prime. (I think the best part about the whole incident was James pleading with the official while restraining Shumpert with one hand. He put TWO people in the death grip!) The story got even better. On the sideline, next to the Warriors bench, a fan got too into the game and started jawing with Matt Barnes.

I know Barnes shouldn’t have even entertained the guy, but NBA players are people. And fans cross the line sometimes. There’s a clear difference between being fun and disrespectful, and there’s nothing wrong with being a funny heckler — I mean, the Q’s crowd chanted “Russ-ell West-brook!” when Durant went to the free throw line before the whole fiasco happened.

Things settled down in the fourth. Cleveland extended its lead far enough for both teams to empty the benches, and the Cavaliers won the gritty, ugly contest, 137-116. As bad and inconsistent as the officiating was, it’s not why the Warriors lost the game. Both teams were affected by it. Oddly enough, Golden State shot 36 free throws to the Cavaliers’ 31 and only got whistled for three more personals (27-24). Cleveland won on the shoulders of LeBron and Kyrie Irving, who were sensational. James finished with 31 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds, and his ninth Finals triple-double puts him ahead of Magic Johnson on the all-time list. Irving put up 40 on 15-of-27 shooting, which included 7-of-12 from three and hit nailed a variety of shots that we would’ve killed him for if he missed.

Also Read: Stop Overlooking the Greatness of LeBron, Durant

Kyrie did most of his damage in the first half, pouring in 11 points in the opening frame and 17 in the second. Down the stretch, however, he was still the go-to guy and tallied eight points in the final period.

Kevin Love also had an impressive night. The Cavaliers are notorious for relentlessly looking at Love out of the gate, and he was huge in setting the right tone. On 4-of-6 from the field, he netted 14 points in the first quarter and 23 for the game. The biggest thing was Love hitting the open looks the Cavaliers got him. J.R. Smith was doing the same thing, and he’s now scored 16 and 15 in the last two games after hitting just one three in the first two.

Most importantly, Tristan Thompson was back to being his ferocious, annoying self. After pulling down double-digit rebounds (10) for the first time since May 21, the Kardashian Curse appears to be lifted, and Cleveland is going to need Thompson to be disruptive and irritating if they have any shot of coming back.

At this point, I’m sure you’re tired of me going on and on about the Cavaliers. Frankly, the Warriors don’t have much for me to talk about. Durant was incredible yet again with 35 points. However, he wasn’t normal. He shot just 9-of-22 from the field but helped himself by going 15-of-16 from the foul line. Draymond Green followed Durant’s lead with 16 points and 14 rebounds, but he was also less-than-stellar with shooting and missed 10 of his 16 attempts. It came down to Golden State missing more shots than Cleveland, and a lot of them were shots that they’ve made all season long. The Warriors still shot 45 percent from the field and 58.3 percent on twos, but it was their appallingly bad three-point shooting that hurt them the most.

Durant and Green combined to go 3-of-15 from downtown, and Klay Thompson was the only one who had a decent night from the perimeter. He went 4-of-10 from deep and attempted just one field goal from two-point territory. He missed.

Also Read: Team USA’s Best 3-on-3 Teams For 2020 Olympics

Now, as much as we want to bash the way the game was called, we cannot gloss over the fact that Stephen Curry was a non-factor in the scoring column. We killed Irving for how he played to start the series, and we were also harsh on Steph for how he played last year. It’s only right to continue it. Curry did a great job finding teammates and getting others involved. Because of that, he finished with 10 dimes and only four turnovers. However, the Warriors need Steph to be on when no one else is. And he wasn’t. The two-time MVP had 14 points on 4-of-13 from the field, and nine of his looks were from behind the arc. He did nail four of his five free throws, but I saw a lack of aggression that was present to start the series.

I know this is a different conversation if he made a few open looks, but Curry’s much more than a three-point shooter and I’m befuddled as to why he didn’t look to shoot more.

Durant’s been the Warriors best player, but Steph can get his shot just as often as the league’s best. And Golden State cannot beat the Cavaliers if Curry’s only taking 13 shots and converting on 30 percent of them. It won’t happen — especially when Irving is across from him going for 35-plus.

This series is far from over. One bad showing doesn’t take away from Golden State’s lethality. There were times when the Warriors started to pick up momentum, and it’ll be that much easier for them to do it on their home court. Both Durant and Curry have given up 3-1 leads before, and — literally — everyone’s eyes are going to be on the two of them to see if they’re able to bounce back and put the Cavaliers away before they start gaining too much traction.

Conversely, those same eyes are going to look at James and Irving just as equally. They’re going to have to play like this for three more games to complete the biggest comeback in NBA history against, arguably, its greatest team.

Start a conversation with me on Twitter