Golden State survive Raptors onslaught and force game six
There was a sense that Monday night was going to be the night for the Raptors. However, it wasn’t and the wait will go on until at least Thursday evening.
Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for three three-pointers in the final three minutes as the Golden State Warriors held on to defeat the Toronto Raptors 106-105 on Monday night in Game five to stay alive in the NBA Finals.
The Raptors attempted a title-winning shot. However, Kyle Lowry’s three-point try from the corner hit the side of the backboard on the buzzer. It would have been the perfect way to wrap up the championship. But, it wasn’t to be; not tonight at least.
Meanwhile, Curry finished with 31 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. Although he hit just 10-of-23 shots from the floor and 5-of-14 from three-point range.
“Missed shots can’t kill your confidence. I’m going to get my legs ready for Game 6 and take those same shots,” Curry said. “I have a whole lot [to give]. We know how hard it is. We gave ourselves a chance. It’s doing to be a dogfight for 48 minutes. We’ll be ready.”
Also, Thompson scored 26 points, and DeMarcus Cousins added 14 points for the Warriors. Draymond Green scored 10 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.
Kevin Durant recorded 11 points and two rebounds for Golden State before being helped from the court with under ten minutes remaining in the first half with an Achilles injury. He did not return and will miss the remainder of the finals. Durant had missed the previous nine games due to a calf strain. And it seems that the move to bring him back drastically backfired.
Speaking in a televised post-game interview, Curry paid tribute to Durant’s effort: “He sacrificed his body for us. I’ve got a lot of emotions right now.”
Meanwhile, Kawhi Leonard scored 26 points – including 12 in the fourth quarter – and 12 rebounds for the Raptors. Meanwhile, Lowry added 18 points, Marc Gasol scored 17, Serge Ibaka had 15, Pascal Siakam 12 and Fred VanVleet 11.
Golden State trailed by six with 2:30 to go before going on a 9-0 run that consisted of a pair of Thompson three-pointers and another from Curry.
The Warriors overcame two goaltending calls on Cousins in the final two minutes, plus a half-court violation on Draymond Green and an offensive foul for a moving screen on Cousins with 14.9 seconds left. Thus setting up the final possession.
The travelling side took a six-point lead into the fourth quarter after leading by as many as 14 in the third.
However, the Raptors cut the deficit to three points on Ibaka’s dunk with eight minutes remaining, and Leonard’s put-back trimmed the margin to one.
Draymond Green’s three-pointer had Golden State ahead by four. But Norman Powell’s running dunk cut the deficit to two with 5:36 to go.
Toronto took a three-point lead on Leonard’s three-pointer and followed by a jump shot with 4:46 to play. Leonard hit another three-pointer and added a pull-up jumper to give Toronto a six-point lead with 3:28 to play.
Thompson’s triple trimmed the gap to three with 2:32 left.
The Raptors were called for a shot-clock violation, and Curry tied the game at 103 with a three-pointer.
After Leonard’s miss, Thompson came back with a three-pointer with 57.6 seconds remaining, and the Warriors led by three.
Lowry’s lay-up cut the lead to one point with 29.9 seconds to play. Cousins was called for an offensive foul with 15.7 seconds to play, giving the Raptors a chance. But, Lowry missed his shot as time expired.
“I think that our team has reacted all year long great to bad losses, and I would say it takes a lot to beat this team,” said Raptors head coach Nick Nurse. “And that [it] took a hell of a lot of blows and a heck of a lot of balls bouncing the wrong way in the last couple minutes for us to come out on the wrong side of it tonight.”
Time will tell if the Raptors will regret this missed chance. We are all hoping not. It isn’t the way that this special team that has united the country deserves to be remembered.