It wasn’t officially a must-win game, but it was pretty darn close. And when push came to shove, the Warriors, led by a brilliant outing from Stephen Curry, tied the series at 2-2 with Friday’s 107-97 win in Boston.
The Warriors trailed by four points with less than five minutes to go in the fourth quarter, but ended the game on a 17-3 run. Klay Thompson hit the 3-pointer to put the Dubs ahead for good and Curry scored 10 of his game-high 43 points during that run as the Warriors regained home court advantage in the series.
|Curry – 43||Wiggins – 16||Green – 8|
|Thompson – 18||Looney – 11||Curry – 4|
|Wiggins – 17||Curry – 10||Wiggins/Looney – 2|
|Tatum – 23||Wiiliams – 12||Tatum – 6|
|Brown – 21||Tatum – 11||Smart – 5|
|Smart – 18||Brown/Horford – 6||Horford/Williams – 4|
DUBS FINISH STRONG
The Warriors played from behind for the majority of the game, but unlike Game 3, the Dubs never let the game get away from them. They trailed by as many as seven points in the first quarter and Boston matched that advantage in the second and third periods, but the Warriors answered with yet another strong third quarter during which they outscored Boston 30-24. The Dubs had a shaky start to the final period with some turnovers, and Boston’s Marcus Smart knocked down what seemed to be a back-breaking 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to put the Celtics up four with a little over five minutes left in the game.
But the Warriors didn’t fold. An Andrew Wiggins putback stopped the Celtics spurt, Thompson knocked down his fourth 3-pointer of the game to put the Dubs up for good, and a few minutes later Curry punctuated the 10-0 spurt by drilling a 27-foot 3-pointer from the right wing. That shot gave the Dubs a six-point lead, their largest advantage to that point of the game. Curry, one of three Dubs players with at least 10 rebounds, added to the run with some late free throws, scoring 24 of his 43 points in the second half.
Thompson knocked down some big shots in the second half, as three of his five field goals over the final two periods either tied or put the Dubs ahead. And his other two shots came at a point of desperation for the Dubs, who faced their largest deficit of the quarters – seven in the third, five in the fourth – prior to Thompson’s midrange jumpers. Thompson finished the game with 18 points, 13 of those coming in the second half.
CURRY’S THIRD QUARTER FLURRY
That the Warriors were in position to win had a lot to do with Curry’s third quarter performance. Curry knocked down several tough shots during the period, and his 14 points in the quarter was one of the top reasons the Dubs turned what was a five-point halftime deficit into a one-point advantage entering the final period. Curry made seven 3-pointers in the win, matching the most he’s made this postseason, with four of those coming in the third quarter.
WIGGINS STEPS UP
The under-the-radar hero of the game was Andrew Wiggins. The Warriors’ wing was a source of production all night long. He finished the game with 17 points and a playoff career-high 16 rebounds, and his work on the offensive glass is what ignited the Warriors’ game-ending run. In addition, he was the primary defender on Boston’s All-NBA forward Jayson Tatum, who was held to 23 points on 8-for-23 shooting.
POOLE KEEPS THE DUBS IN REACH
Although the Warriors trailed entering halftime, their deficit would have been much larger if not for the play of Jordan Poole. The third-year guard played with force, and when both teams had a tough time scoring to start the second quarter, it was Poole who took the lid off the basket with two straight 3-pointers. Poole scored 10 straight Warriors points bridging the first and second quarters, and his 14 points led a Dubs reserve unit that outscored Boston’s bench 25-20.
DUBS DEFENSE DELIVERS
The Warriors out-rebounded the Celtics 55-42 and won the game behind a strong defensive effort that kept Boston under 100 points for the second time this series. Boston hit on over 50 percent of their 3-point attempts in the first half but went 7-for-24 from distance over the final two quarters. And after scoring 28 points in the opening period, the Dubs defense got stingier as the game wore on, leading to 26, 24 and 19 Celtics points in the second, third and fourth quarters.
With the NBA Finals tied at 2-2, the series shifts back to San Francisco for Game 5. Tickets are available now and all fans in attendance will receive a Gold Blooded T-Shirt, courtesy of Hewlett Packard Enterprise.
More Notables …
- The Warriors have now won at least one road game in 27-straight playoff series, an NBA record… The streak dates back to a 2013 First Round series vs. Denver.
- Golden State improved to 6-0 during the current postseason in games following a loss.
- The Warriors are now 14-6 overall during the 2022 Playoffs.
- Tonight marked the Warriors’ first postseason win in Boston dating back to March 22, 1960 in Game 5 of the Eastern Division Final… The Warriors are 2-13 at Boston in the postseason all-time.
- Golden State improved to 4-2 in NBA Finals Game 4s dating back to the 2015 postseason (4-1 on the road)… The Warriors are 33-28 in Game 4s all-time (15-9 dating back to 2015).
- The Warriors improved to 6-0 this postseason when holding their opponent to 99-or-fewer points.
- Golden State improved to 10-3 in the current postseason when outrebounding its opponent.
- The trio of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green have won 19 games in the NBA Finals, matching the Spurs trio of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobli for the most by any trio in the last 50 seasons.
- The Warriors deployed their sixth unique starting lineup of the 2022 postseason.
- Stephen Curry scored a game-high 43 points, his third-most points scored in a playoff game and second-most in the Finals behind a playoff career-high 47 points vs. Toronto on 6/5/19… Curry reached the 30-point plateau for the 10th time in the 2022 Playoffs and 50th career, becoming the 11th player to accomplish the feat… It marked the 13th time in a Finals game Curry scored at least 30 points, matching Kobe Bryant for eighth-most all-time… Curry made seven 3-pointers, making five-or-more 3-pointers in four straight games, the longest streak within a single Finals all-time… According to ESPN Stats & Info, with 43 points and 10 rebounds, Curry (at age 34 years, 88 days) became the second-oldest player in NBA Finals history to record a 40-point, 10-rebound game behind only LeBron James in 2020 (at age 35 years, 284 days).
- Andrew Wiggins recorded his fourth double of the 2022 Playoffs and fifth career with 17 points and 16 rebounds… His 16 rebounds were the most he’s grabbed in any game in his career, regular season or playoffs.
- Kevon Looney came off the bench to grab 11 rebounds – it’s the second time in Looney’s playoff career he’s grabbed double figures in rebounds off the bench (14, 5/20/19 at Portland)… Looney has grabbed 10-or-more rebounds in five games in this year’s playoffs.
- Draymond Green passed Gary Payton (216 steals) and Andre Iguodala (217) to move into sole possession of 25th on the NBA Playoff all-time steals list… Green finished with a game-high eight assists, and a 2022 Playoff-high four steals.