For the second year in a row, the Golden State ended Houston’s playoff dreams on the Rockets’ home court. Except this one is going to hurt the Rockets more, this is the one where the breaks went their way.
“This one is going to leave a mark. This one hurts,” Houston coach Mike D’Antoni said.
This time the Warriors did it without Kevin Durant. They did it with the Rockets at full strength. They did it because the Warriors bench was a force and scored 33 points in a deciding game, stepping up into Durant’s shoes.
They did it despite Stephen Curry scoring zero first-half points.
Yet the game was tied at the half anyway, and in the second half Curry dropped 33 as the Warriors pick-and-rolled the Rockets to death. Houston had no answers. The Rockets would trap Curry, he would find a rolling Draymond Green, and it was all downhill from there for the Warriors. Golden State made plays down the stretch as champions do, including Klay Thompson who finished with 27 points and hit 7 threes.
Golden State won Game 6 118-113 to take the series 4-2.
The Warriors will face the winner of Denver and Portland — they play in a Game 7 Sunday — starting Tuesday night in Oakland.
That is series the Warriors should get Kevin Durant back during.
The Rockets had their chance in the first half, when Curry was scoreless. Yet it was the strong play of the Golden State bench that kept the Warriors close, combined with 21 points from Klay Thompson in the half (he finished with 27 including 7 threes).
Curry came alive in the second half and was 9-of-15 including 4-of-9 from three.
Down the stretch, the Rockets did what they could defensively to keep Curry from beating them, but that just opened the door for everyone else.