The Warriors are young and too naive to feel the weight of playoff pressure. In Game 1, the Spurs took them to school and swindled them out of their lunch money and a win. The Warriors should have begun Game 2 a little more apprehensively after failing fourth quarter management.
Game 1’s lesson clearly went in one ear and out the other. The Warriors are living a YOLO lifestyle on the floor. If the shot falls, it’s all good. If not, they’ll charge it to the game, shrug it off and try it again next time down the court. The juices were flowing, the shots were falling and they didn’t let up for four quarters.
Steph Curry was draining treys off a one-handed hop, teardrops from the moon, but Game 2 was about Klay Thompson’s redemption.
Thompson fouled out of Game 1, and as soon as he did, SA started their comeback. There would be none of that for Thompson this time, and he came firing on all cylinders. Not since a young Ali was Cassius, has a Klay captivated the sports world like Thompson did in Game 2. If Curry is the Warriors’ future, Klay is future 1b.
Together, they bombarded the Spurs defense from deep. After Game 1, Pops had no answer for Curry. Following Game 2, Thompson had Gregg Popovich popping Extra Strength Tylenol.
“Klay was unbelievable,” Pops said sounding star struck. “A lot of those shots were tough. Some of them were wide open because of mistakes, but other ones were difficult shots, either contested or off balance, but he knocked them down. That’s what the playoffs are about; players have to make shots.”
In the first half, Thompson drained seven threes and lit Golden State up for 29 points. It was the most points any player had ever scored against Pops’ Spurs in one half of a playoff game, barely eclipsing Stephen Curry’s 28 in Game 1.
Thompson’s brilliance was so bright that it covered up Curry’s off shooting night. Curry scored 23, but couldn’t hit the broadside of the barn in the second half. The Warriors were fortunate enough to build up a cushion courtesy of Thompson’s hot hand, but they nearly shot themselves out of it in the fourth quarter.
The Spurs operate within the confines of Pops’ structured offense. The Warriors play like a March Madness15-seed on a kamikaze mission, which means their offensive explosions can be followed by scoring famines. Luckily, the Spurs were unable to take advantage of their offensive possessions, but in Game 3 that may not be the case.
Golden State is slightly ahead of their schedule. The Warriors’ season was supposed to end against the Denver Nuggets. However, you only live once and Golden State is seizing the present as their future. It’s a wise strategy. Run TMC, Chris Webber, as well as B-Diddy and J-Rich, have proven that waiting for the future doesn’t always pan out.
On Friday, they head back to the Bay with the upper hand on San Antonio and a chance to seize the present day.