OAKLAND -- Here is the dilemma for the Cleveland Cavaliers: Do they feel good or bad about holding Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson to 20 points in Game 1 of the NBA Finals while still losing by 15 points?

Is it possible that the answer could be both?

The Cavs made things exceedingly difficult on Curry and Thompson on Thursday night, blitzing Curry, switching everything, double-teaming him and daring the Warriors' supporting cast to beat them.

In a 104-89 victory that gave Golden State a 1-0 lead, the Warriors' reserves and role players didn't just beat the Cavs; they obliterated them at the end of the third and early in the fourth quarter.

So much for James having enough help this time around.

"We took LeBron out towards the end of the third quarter, and a couple of minutes in the fourth quarter," Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said, "and the game kind of got away from us."

Teams make in-season acquisitions who pay dividends in the playoffs all the time. But it's rare that a team has a chance to add a coach who can make as much of an impact as defensive assistant Mike Longabardi has throughout this playoff run for Cleveland. Longabardi was unceremoniously fired amid chaos in Phoenix and scooped up in an instant by Lue to add a steady hand to the defensive side of the ball.

Longabardi was groomed in Boston by Doc Rivers and Tom Thibodeau, and on Thursday night, he did what everyone thought was impossible: He completely shut down Curry and Thompson, holding them to 20 points -- with six of those coming on late 3-pointers during garbage time.

But every action has a reaction, and in this case, it was devastating to the Cavs. The Warriors' role players took the bait and did beat them -- to the tune of 45-10 in points off the bench.

"I missed some shots and didn't get in a rhythm," said Curry, who was 4-for-15 with 11 points. "But the way they defended, we'll be able to find some adjustments for Game 2."

So the question becomes, which is more sustainable as this series evolves: The Cavs' defense controlling Curry and Thompson? Or the Warriors' role players scoring almost as many points as LeBron and Kyrie Irving (who combined for 49)?

"Look, our two main scorers, every now and then -- very, very rarely -- are going to have a game like this," Andrew Bogut said. "But it's up to the other guys to carry the load and step up and make shots. And numerous guys can do that."

Whether or not we've seen a blueprint for how the rest of the series will go, we don't know. But I suspect the Cavs have shown their cards as far as what their defensive approach will be: Make life very, very difficult for Curry and Thompson and hope Golden State's role players can't replicate what they did Thursday night.

It's risky business either way.

"I think defensively, we had a game plan and we followed it as much as possible," James said. "Well, as great as we could for 48 minutes."

Well, for 36 minutes, anyway.

"We had some breakdowns, which we know we can get better with," James said.

The Cavs have shown their cards, and the Warriors' supporting cast hit blackjack in Game 1. Still, for Cleveland, it might be the only gamble that makes sense.

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The Cavs shut down the Splash Brothers in Game 1, but at a hefty cost. USATSI