Golden State Warriors 132 – 105 LA Clippers
Warriors lead series 2-1
The Golden State Warriors returned to a level of normalcy Thursday with a 132-105 win over the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 3 of their first-round playoff series after blowing a 31-point lead in Monday’s Game 2.
The two-time defending champions split the first two games at Oracle Arena with the eighth-seeded Clippers and needed to win at least once in Staples Center to advance. They wasted little time by doing just that in their first opportunity.
Kevin Durant was unstoppable, pouring in 38 points on 14-of-23 shooting to go with seven assists and four rebounds. Stephen Curry added 21 points on 4-of-6 shooting from deep, while Klay Thompson (12 points) and Andre Iguodala (15 points) provided support.
Lou Williams (16 points, six assists) and Ivica Zubac (18 points, 15 rebounds) led the way in the losing effort for the Clippers.
Houston Rockets 104 – 101 Utah Jazz
Rockets lead series 3-0
The Houston Rockets overcame a historically rough shooting night by James Harden to grab a commanding 3-0 series lead over the Utah Jazz with a 104-101 victory in Game 3 on Saturday.
Harden (22 points and 10 assists) managed a double-double despite missing his first 15 shot attempts. Chris Paul contributed 18 points to the cause.
Donovan Mitchell had 34 points in a losing effort for the Jazz.
Harden played a key role in helping Houston cruise to a 2-0 series lead, but as he endured one of his toughest shooting nights, his supporting cast showed its worth.
Portland Trail Blazers 108 – 120 Oklahoma City Thunder
Blazers lead series 2-1
The Oklahoma City Thunder got on the board with a 120-108 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 3 on Friday as the series shifted to Chesapeake Energy Arena in OKC.
Russell Westbrook led the way for the Thunder with 33 points, 11 assists and five rebounds. Paul George added 22 points, six assists and six rebounds.
Damian Lillard had 32 points and six assists for the Trail Blazers in a losing effort, and CJ McCollum contributed 21 points, seven assists and seven rebounds.
Denver Nuggets 108 – 118 San Antonio Spurs
Spurs lead series 2-1
Before the San Antonio Spurs’ 2018-19 campaign even began, the injury bug sunk its teeth into a team already surrounded with question marks. In a preseason game, starting point guard Dejounte Murray suffered a season-ending injury when he tore his ACL.
Afterward, The Ringer’s Haley O’Shaughnessy wrote: “Without Murray, the newest and youngest of San Antonio’s familiar faces, the one most expected to make a leap, the optimism for one of those classic Popovich playoff runs begins to drain. These are not your mama’s Spurs.”
And yet, here we stand after San Antonio’s 118-108 Game 3 victory to take a 2-1 series lead over the Denver Nuggets, potentially on the precipice of another “one of those classic Popovich playoffs runs.”