Culture of Hoops

Warriors Outlast Spurs to Take 3-0 Series Lead

Image courtesy of Keith Allison/Flickr.

Image courtesy of Keith Allison/Flickr.

The Golden State Warriors received a much more competitive test from the San Antonio Spurs in Game 2. This followed Gregg Popovich calling his team out after a pitiful Game 2 showing in Oakland. Even with a substantial improvement in San Antonio’s effort, they ultimately fell at home by a 120-108 score.

The Warriors shot 55 percent from the field and about 41 percent on threes. Golden State’s primary Game 3 issue was turnovers, totaling 21 as a team. The Spurs shot 47 percent from the floor and 24 percent from deep. They committed 15 turnovers.

Manu Ginobili posted 21 points in 19 minutes to help the Spurs compete early on. San Antonio actually had the lead after the first quarter (33-29). Ginobili didn’t receive enough help, however, as most of the Spurs starters struggled offensively. David Lee also exited the game with a knee injury.

The exception might be Kyle Anderson who went 3-3 with a 6-9-5 line in his starting role. LaMarcus Aldridge took 17 shots to reach 18 points, Jonathon Simmons needed 17 shots for 14 points, Danny Green was 3-11, and Patty Mills continued his nightmarish series with a 2-10 display.

For Golden State, it was Kevin Durant who did the most damage. He erupted in the third quarter to extend his team’s lead to double-digits. Durant finished with 33 points and 10 rebounds on 11-19 shooting. He also went 3-5 from deep (the lone negative from Durant was his 7 turnovers).

Before Durant’s explosion, it was Javale McGee who helped set the tone for the Warriors. Starting in place of the injured Zaza Pachulia, McGee scored 16 points on 6-9 shooting. His production helped Golden State survive the early parts of the game as the Spurs expectedly showed a first quarter burst.

Beyond this, Stephen Curry had 21 points and 6 steals, going 8-15 from the floor and 3-7 on triples. Klay Thompson didn’t explode, but he did improve upon his performance compared to the initial games in Oakland. Thompson was 7-15 from the field and 3-6 on threes for 17 points. David West also contributed with 6 points and 5 assists off the bench.

Dewayne Dedmon only saw action late in the contest, however, he did his best to make his mark in quite an inappropriate manner. The backup big man screened Curry while Curry’s back was turned and attempted to take him out from the knees. This was another “one fan base sees it a certain way, the other sees it the opposite way” type of play, but the intent appeared obvious. Regardless, Curry wasn’t injured, but I’m sure Golden State took note of Dedmon’s egregiously dirty play.

With a 3-0 series lead and San Antonio’s spirits completely crushed, we wait for Game 4 which will occur on Monday, 5/22 at 9:00 PM ET.

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