The more things change, the more they stay the same.
While some of the pieces are different, the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers will face each other in the NBA Finals for the fourth consecutive year after the defending champions beat the Houston Rockets 101-92 in Monday’s Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals at Toyota Center.
Kevin Durant (34 points, five assists and five boards) and Stephen Curry (27 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and four steals) led the way, while James Harden (32 points, six assists, six rebounds and four steals) fell short in his effort to propel the Rockets to the Finals for the first time since 1995.
Most teams need all four quarters to win championships,cheap youth nfl jerseys but the Warriors aren’t most teams. They just need the third quarter.
The Warriors were down 11 at the half Monday but blitzed the Rockets to the tune of 33-15 in the third quarter a mere two days after they won Game 6’s third quarter 33-16 to overcome a double-digit deficit. Curry went into takeover mode by darting by defenders, drilling contested threes and setting up his teammates when Houston collapsed on his shot or penetration, and the game swung in a blur.
Fans can criticize the Warriors for going through the motions early in games and relying on their overwhelming talent and the ability to flip the switch, but it works so often it’s easier to just accept what’s going to happen at this point.
The game was there on a silver platter for the Rockets.youth nfl jerseys cheap
The Game 7 home crowd they worked so hard to earn was electric, and they were beating the Warriors to loose balls, forcing turnovers, dominating the boards and riding early scoring and behind-the-back passes from Harden. The potential MVP was shining against his former teammate Durant and having his breakthrough moment on the marquee stage.
While Harden and Co. were frustrated with the officiating as their double-digit lead evaporated in the third, they have nobody to blame but themselves. They missed all 14 three-point attempts in the quarter on the way to setting an NBA playoff record with 27 consecutive missed triples.youth nfl jerseys
The stretch will surely haunt the Western Conference’s top seed throughout the offseason, perhaps even more than the fact Chris Paul couldn’t play in Games 6 or 7 with a hamstring injury.
That being said, the Warriors weren’t always the most aesthetically pleasing powerhouse in the Western Conference Finals and clearly benefited from Paul’s injury when they were on the brink of elimination. They also found themselves behind by double digits early in both Games nfl youth jerseys 6 and 7 and looked nothing like arguably the best team in NBA history at times.
It will be no matter in the Finals, even with LeBron James on the other end.