Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, Golden State Warriors vs Houston Rockets from the Toyota Center.
“It feels like the finals.” said Cedrick Golden, Sports Columnists for the Austin American-Statesman before the game “It’s the game we’ve been waiting for 6 months now.” Replied Jerome Solomon, Sports Columnists for the Houston Chronicle.
The Warriors defeated the Rockets in a physical Game 1 led by Kevin Durant who connected for 37. The game started off with a technical foul from Draymond Green on Harden within the first 5 minutes. Former teammates to Durant, James Harden, carried the jet pack for the Houston Rockets scoring 41. The 7th 40+ game of his postseason career and the 3rd this postseason.
Though Harden played a great game making more than 50% of his shots from beyond the arch it was not enough. The Warriors took Game 1 with a 119 to 106 victory Monday night in Houston.
Struggling to find their rhythm early, the Warriors style of play was missing their typical flow and went into halftime tied at 56. All season, the 3rd quarter has been important for the Warriors in turning games around, and this game was no different. The Warrior’s scored 31 points in the 3rd against the Rockets to give them a 7 point lead going into the 4th quarter.
When asked why his team struggled so much, Rockets coach D’Antoni said “There were too many times where we had mental lapses. We didn’t switch properly, turned the ball over and missed too many layups. We need to do a better job of staying up mentally.”
Klay Thompson capitalizing off of the Rockets’ many mental breakdowns added a 28 point game performance to KD’s 37, including 6 three pointers. When asked if he remembered the last time he played being wide open for most of his 3’s Klay stated “In the playoffs, not too many you’ve just got to take advantage. We’ve got so many great players on this team that draw attention you’ve just got to be ready to shoot.” Also adding in postgame that there is nothing to get comfortable about. “We’ve been in this situation before and lost. Wednesday’s going to be even tougher.”
Curry went for a 18 points still fresh off his Grade 2 MCL sprain in his left knee that kept him out for 10 regular-season games and six postseason appearances. A healthy comeback for Curry is playing out and Coach Kerr says he is expecting him to get better throughout the series. Next game is Wednesday night in Houston.