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AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

NBA: Golden State Crushes Houston; Take Commanding 2-1 Series Lead In Western Conference Finals

The Golden State Warriors came out scorching hot against the Houston Rockets and never let up as they defeat the Houston Rockets 126-85 to take a 2-1 lead in the NBA Western Conference Finals  Warriors guard Stephen Curry scored 35 points, outscoring the Rockets’ tandem of Chris Paul and James Harden who only managed a combined 33 points in the loss.

Stephen Curry is Back

After only scoring 18 points in Game 1 and 16 points in Game 2, Stephen Curry matched those outings in the third quarter alone in Game 3, scoring 18 points.  During the quarter, he ignited the crowd on several occasions and routinely hit tough shots.

https://twitter.com/warriors/status/998377958191464451

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr praised Curry’s toughness throughout the game:

Missed Layups and Turnovers Hurt Houston

Conversely, the Rockets routinely missed open layups and dunks. Couple that with 20 turnovers -and the end result isn’t pretty for Houston. Head coach Mike D’Antoni wasn’t pleased with his team’s play.

Moreover, the team only shot 39.5% from the floor, a number that needs to be much higher to offset Golden State’s potent offense. Plus, the two catalysts for Houston, Paul and Harden, pulled a Houdini act and disappeared on Sunday night. Paul did close with 10 rebounds in the loss, but he shot a dismal 5-for-16. Harden wasn’t much better at 7-for-16.

Rockets’ Defensive Effort

If there is anything positive Houston could take away from Game 3, it should be that no starter for the Warriors played well offensively. Kevin Durant had 25 points, but only shot 9-for-19. The next highest scorer in Klay Thompson only had 13 points on 6-of-14 shooting. If the Rockets could come in with a similar game plan defensively and not miss so many easy shots in Game 4, the game could be much tighter.

Quinn Cook Shows Out

Golden State reserve guard Quinn Cook could be in line for more minutes after Sunday. Although only playing five total minutes in Game 3, he went 4-for-4 from the field and dropped 11 points. The Warriors Twitter account took notice:

https://twitter.com/warriors/status/998386526089170944

Up Next

Golden State stays at home for Game 4 as Houston hopes to bounce back. Coverage begins Tuesday at 8:00 p.m.

 

About Stephen Cabrera

Stephen Cabrera is a current University of Florida Journalism student and fan of football, basketball, mixed martial arts and professional wrestling.

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