Oakland, CA — A back and forth Western conference finals with the Houston Rockets and the Golden State Warriors have kept all basketball fans on their feet. The Warriors came home to the Bay Area being down in the series 3-2 and trying to hold on for one more game for a chance to get to the finals.
With their backs against the wall, Golden State went off just in time to walk away with a 115-86 victory to force Game 7 in the series.
James Harden was completely locked in the opening period as he contributed 15 points, four rebounds, and four assists as the Rockets ended the quarter up, 39-22.
Golden State started to warm up in the second, however, it wasn’t until they hit the court following intermission when the game really changed.
After a slow first half by the Warriors, they were able to start the third quarter at a fast speed, jumping ahead of the Rockets and gaining momentum. Kevin Durant and Steph Curry, who have been nothing but net this series, once again kept the Rockets and Harden humble throughout.
While Durant and Curry were once again spectacular, there was another star for Golden State who owned the second half: Klay Thompson. He took complete control of the game as he lit the net on fire en route to his team high 32-points. By the conclusion of the game, Thompson had drilled 9-of-14 threes, all of which sparked his teammates and fired up the crowd even more.
Behind the hot shooting of Thompson, the Warriors outscored Houston 64-25 after intermission. Their defensive intensity also increased as the Rockets turned the ball over more which quickly were turned into fast break points for Golden State.
Despite Houston dominating in the first and second frames, their same momentum did not transfer to the third and fourth. Harden continued to find his stroke, yet his 32-points wouldn’t be enough to close the gap.
Unfortunately, Houston was missing Chris Paul who suffered a hamstring injury late in Game 5, forcing him to watch from the bench in Game 6. His absence was felt on the court, specifically when it came to taking care of the ball as the Rockets turned the ball over 21 times.
With the Warriors responding and tying the series at three games apiece, this will be the first time since 1979 that both the Eastern and Western Conference Finals went to Game 7.
The Rockets and Warriors head back to H-town for one last match up. The game is on Monday, May 28 at 9:00 ET. The winner will head to the NBA finals to play the Cleveland Cavaliers.