Stephen Curry wins Warriors 3 – ‘We gave ourselves life’

Kendra AndrewsESPN4 minutes to read

Steph Curry drains Trey for Golden State

Steph Curry hits a three-pointer as the Warriors continue to advance against the Kings in Game 1.

San Francisco – with Draymond Green took a one-game suspension and the Golden State Warriors lost 0-2 in the first round of their playoff series against the Sacramento Kings, and they had a clear mindset: Don’t feel sorry for ourselves.

“We’re winning this because of Draymond,” Donte DiVincenzo told ESPN before game three on Thursday, which Golden State won 114-97 to split the series 2-1.

“Understanding how bad of a decision I think the league made in suspending him, you’re disappointed with that,” Warriors guard Stephen Curry said. “We’ve got work to do, and there’s nothing we can do about it… We obviously understand the consequences if we lose tonight, and nobody wants to feel that.”

Curry added, “Very frankly, if we lose this game, it’s pretty much over. You have to grasp the moment, and we gave ourselves life.”

The Warriors put together one of their most complete games this season.

“Our guys were locked up yesterday when the news came out and we turned the page pretty quickly,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “There’s no need to dwell on the point. The league has just made the decision. You only have one way to go, and that’s getting ready for the next one, and that’s what our guys did.”

Unlike their two games in Sacramento, where the Kings dictated pace and made the Warriors play frantic and sloppy, the Warriors dominated the pace on Thursday.

They committed just 12 turnovers for seven points, compared to 22 turnovers for 25 points in the second game. They finished with 19 personal errors but only had eight through the first three quarters. And even without Green, who is key to smoothing their offense, the team’s ball movement was vintage Warriors with 31 tackles in 55 tackles. Under Kerr, the Warriors are now 29-3 when recording 30 assists. One of these three losses came in this series.

“That was the key,” Kerr said. “I think the players understood what that decision was doing, forcing Sacramento to play in the half court where we had been hard for them throughout the series.”

“It’s a good lesson for us on how to control every offensive possession, knowing how we can create space and create open appearances and win the possession game, which historically has been a good thing for us, considering how highly aggressive we are,” Curry said.

In Green’s absence, Kevon Looney stepped up as facilitator, and the team went 9-for-9 with his assists for 23 points. He also pulled down 20 rebounds, including nine offensive boards. As a team, Golden State finished with 19 offensive rebounds, compared to 18 rebounds in Games 1 and 2.

“It’s tough,” Carey said. “He knows how to be effective when he’s there. He’s shown that so many times before, and he’s been huge. … Offensive rebounds are usually, once you get possession, someone’s going to be open because everyone’s scattered. It’s just a great look for him.” For us to create a good offense and then a second chance, everyone’s kind of in a rhythm and you step in. It’s like what the game calls for, and you knock them down.”

Curry made three buckets of Looney assists, including a 3-pointer at the end of the first half to turn the momentum around hard for Golden State.

Curry finished the night with 36 points on 12-of-25 shooting, including six 3-pointers. He added six rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block and only had one turnover.

On the other hand, the Warriors held the Kings to 38% shooting from the field, their worst field goal percentage in a game all season. Sacramento also finished with 97 points, tied for third-lowest total of the season. This total is also tied for the third-fewest points allowed by the Warriors this season.

And that was without two of their best defenders.

Heading inside, the Warriors realized the significance of Game 3 and the uphill battle they were facing. They still didn’t think they’d accomplished anything, with Kerr saying after Thursday’s win, “Nothing’s happened yet. … Until somebody wins the road game, everybody’s just holding their serve.”

But the Warriors finally looked like themselves for the first time in this series and avoided falling into a 3-0 hole. Their season is still alive.

Curry said, “The most important thing is we were in a situation where the momentum doesn’t necessarily carry over from one game to the next unless you do the same level, so it’s just one game. But it was a big game for sure.”

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