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You either live or die via the 3, but the Warriors survived by it.
“I’ve got a lot of emotions right now.”
Game 5 was nuts, and one of the most drama-filled sporting events I’ve ever witnessed. Because how else do you describe a game in which Kevin Durant goes down, and the Warriors are still able to hang on to win after trailing by 6 with 3:28 to go.
“Do or die, obviously,” said Curry. “It wasn’t pretty in the second half but we just made enough plays and Klay hit some huge shots, DeMarcus gave us great minutes, Draymond, obviously doing what he does every night. Just had to find our way.”
After Durant went down with 9:46 left in the second quarter injuring his Achilles, leaving basketball fans across the globe sick as it feels like we won’t be seeing Durant back on the court until the 2020-2021 season, the Raptors were supposed to win.
I mean, they had it. Until they didn’t.
“We did it for Kevin,” exclaimed Thompson. “You saw what we’re capable of when he’s out on the floor, and that’s a true warrior coming out battling with his team and putting his health on the line. We’re trying to win the next two for him.”
And to make things even crazier, after being passed over by Kevon Looney and Andrew Bogut in the rotation, DeMarcus Cousins entered the game in the second quarter to convert on his first three shots, scoring 7 points in a little over a minute.
The combination of Curry, Cousins, Durant, Thompson, and Draymond Green scored 54 of the Warriors 56 points in the first half.
But despite all the craziness that occurred, one thing was consistent throughout the night: this game was going to be determined by how well the Warriors shot the ball from deep.
And when it was all said and done, Golden State converted 46.3% of their 3-pointers as they shot 20-42 from deep. The identity that their dynasty was built on wound up being the thing that advanced them to Game 6, as Curry and Thompson’s back-to-back 3’s wound up being the Warriors’ final points.
“Keep shooting. Considering what we have on the floor and the skillsets that we have, missed shots can’t kill your confidence,” explained Curry.
Coming into Monday night, the Raptors were 5-1 this season against the Warriors and had a good reason to be confident in front of their raucous home crowd. But even before the game started, the Raptors weren’t going to let the emotion of the moment take the focus off the task at hand.
“We haven’t done anything,” said Kyle Lowry after Game 4. “We won three games. It’s the first of four. We understand that. They’re the defending champs, and they’re not going to go out easy. They’re going to come and fight and prepare to play the next game, and that’s how we’re preparing ourselves, that we have to — we got to prepare ourselves to play the next game.”
Even with Durant’s injury, the momentum has shifted to the Warriors as they get to have one final game in Oracle Arena on Thursday.
“Game 6 is going to be fun,” proclaimed Curry.
“It’s going to be dog fight for 48 minutes.”
And while I understand that it might be corny, I can’t help but feel like the Raptors just blew a “golden” opportunity.