Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors was dribbling the ball in one of his comfortable spots, which tends to be pretty much anywhere on the court. But on this occasion, he was stationed outside the 3-point line and searching for space against an unfamiliar defender.
Tristan Thompson, a 6-foot-10 center for the Cleveland Cavaliers, had switched onto Curry and was refusing to go away, batting at the ball with his saucepan hands. Curry kept dribbling and dribbling, searching and searching, until finally he bounced the ball off his sneaker and out of bounds.
The Cavaliers returned home to Quicken Loans Arena on Wednesday night for Game 3 of the N.B.A. finals, and everything about their approach changed in a 120-90 victory that rekindled the drama in a series that had been one-sided through the first two games.
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