Klay Thompson scored 37 points as the Golden State Warriors crushed the Portland Trailblazers 118-106 Sunday to take a 1-0 lead in the Western Conference semifinals. Cheering from the sidelines, Stephen Curry revealed that he was “expecting” to feature in Game 3 of the series next Saturday in Portland.
Despite Curry’s knee injury, Warriors opened the series as overwhelming favorites and lived up to the tag by running away with a 37-17 first quarter lead to deliver an early knockout blow to Portland. |Final Box Score|
Thompson, who shot 7/14 from deep, became the first player in playoffs history to hit at least 7 or more three pointers in three consecutive games. Draymond Green had his first triple-double of the postseason, notching up 23 points, 13 rebounds, 11 assists, 3 blocks and steal. In yet another clinical performance, all five Warriors starters scored in double-digits with Harrison Barnes (10 points, 12 rebounds) and Andrew Bogut (10 points, 12 rebounds, 3 blocks) producing double-doubles.
Warriors shut down Lillard, McCollom
The Warriors played some stellar defense to shut down Portland’s primary scoring options. While Damian Lillard (30 points, 5 assists) was kept to 8/26 from the field, CJ McCollom was restricted to 5/17 and 0/4 from deep. Even though Allan Crabbe provided a boost off the bench with 15 points (6-9 FG) and Al-Farouq Aminu continued to shoot well from deep (3-8 3pt), the Blazers couldn’t match the Warriors shot-for-shot and proved to be an inferior team over the course of 48 minutes.
Meanwhile, Warriors’ reserve big man Anderson Varejao and Portland’s Gerald Henderson were ejected in the third quarter after receiving their second technical fouls. After Varejao tripped Henderson with a strange MMA-type move, the Portland guard stood up and got up in the Brazilian’s face. After the duo jawed a few times, they both were tossed out with 15 seconds left in the quarter.
Stephen Curry back for Game 3?
Curry gave an update on his injury during a sideline interview with ESPN’s Lisa Salters. Curry said that his chances to take the court for Saturday’s Game 3 are “pretty good”. According to the initial MRI diagnosis, Curry is scheduled to be revaluated next weekend. “I’ll do anything I can this week to make that happen,” said a confident Curry.
Steve Kerr, the Warriors coach, doesn’t intend to rush his star player back. “It just depends how his week goes. We’ll just monitor him and see how it goes and hopefully get him back at some point. It’s nice to have that long break between 2 and 3,” said Kerr before Sunday’s game.
It does appear that Warriors should be able to beat the Blazers in a best-of-seven series without Curry. Should they risk bringing back the MVP before the conference finals? Game 2 is on Tuesday.
— GoldenStateWarriors (@warriors) May 1, 2016