When Klay Thompson gets mentioned, it's usually under the cover of association: He's the other half of the Splash Brothers, one-fifth of the Hamptons Five, and the fourth member of Golden State's oft-cited "four future Hall of Famers".
OAKLAND, Calif. - Houston Rockets star James Harden took a big-picture view in the wake of a blowout Game 6 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night that evened the Western Conference finals. The defending champions trail Houston three games to two after consecutive wins by the Rockets. And they did so by covering up first-half blemishes and a 17-point deficit with third-quarter dominance.
Paul's presence at Oracle Arena still meant plenty.
The effort to push pace didn't result in points on the first play - Stephen Curry missed a 3-pointer following the block - but the Warriors told everyone what their gameplan was in Game 6. The Rockets shot 11-of-22 from 3 in that half while the Warriors only made 4-of-18.
Simply put, Green was vast, and that - just as much as the Splash Brothers' big night and Paul's absence - brought about Monday's winner-take-all contest. Paul began this postseason as the league's career leader in playoff games without making a trip to the conference finals; in the words of Warriors Coach Steve Kerr, he "pretty much willed" Houston to victory in Games 4 and 5.
Added D'Antoni: "So we've got what we want, now it's up to us to go get it". "I was just rushing it a little bit, not being decisive with my shots". They're crossing fingers whenever Kevon Looney, Jordan Bell and/or Nick Young are pressed to play more than 15 minutes.More news: Toss drama before IPL final
First, the lapses: Instead of playing with the kind of desperation and hustle needed to avoid elimination, the Warriors played with regular-season sluggishness. Draymond Green had six assists, Curry had six, Durant had four and six other Warriors recorded at least one assist. "We have these lapses and then we have these bursts and everything in between". "They see the challenge. whether CP's there or not, it's a heck of a challenge, and they're up to it".
At halftime, the Rockets certainly could see it.
"Yeah, it's a great opportunity for both teams to come out there and play a great brand of basketball", Durant said.
Golden State stormed home to win the final quarter 31-9 when a close finish looked in store.
"Once we settled down and we got the defense in a better position, then we started moving the ball, and the game felt more like a Warriors game". At one point in the second quarter, when the Warriors were beginning to make a run, he was telling his teammates on the court to keep things going.