Warriors Quest for 3-Peat Denied
Raptors Celebrate First Championship in Franchise History as Dubs Fall in Final Home Game at Oracle Arena
It wasn’t the send off Dub Nation had in mind, but the Warriors sure went down with a fight. In the final Warriors game ever at Oracle Arena, the Dubs’ suffered a season-ending 114-110 loss to the Raptors on Thursday in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. The first team to make five consecutive NBA Finals appearances since the Boston Celtics (1959-66), the Warriors battled but ultimately lost the series in six games to give the Raptors their first championship in franchise history.
It wasn’t the sendoff Dub Nation had in mind, but the Warriors sure went down with a fight. In the final Warriors game ever at Oracle Arena, the Dubs’ suffered a season-ending 114-110 loss to the Raptors on Thursday in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. The first team to make five consecutive NBA Finals appearances since the Boston Celtics (1959-66), the Warriors battled but ultimately lost the series in six games to give the Raptors their first championship in franchise history.
|Thompson - 30||Green - 19||Green - 13|
|Iguodala - 22||Thompson / Cousins - 5||Curry - 7|
|Curry - 21||3 Tied - 3||Looney - 4|
|Siakam / Lowry - 26||Siakam - 10||Lowry - 10|
|Leonard / VanVleet - 22||Gasol - 9||Gasol - 4|
|Ibaka - 15||Lowry - 7||3 Tied - 3|
Down by one with 9.6 seconds left in the game, the Warriors had a shot to go ahead, but Stephen Curry’s 3-point attempt was off the mark, and by the time the Dubs secured the rebound, there was only 0.9 seconds left. The Dubs called a timeout that they didn’t have and were assessed a technical foul. Three Kawhi Leonard free throws, an official review and a Curry full-court heave later, the final horn sounded and the Warriors’ quest for a 3-peat was officially denied.
The Warriors showed tremendous fight in the game, and nobody embodied that more than Klay Thompson. Known as “Game 6 Klay” for huge Game 6 performances in his prior postseason career, Thompson put on a performance that lived up to the nickname. Thompson scored 30 points on 8-for-12 shooting, hitting four of his six three-point attempts. But his evening was cut short in the third quarter when he went up for a dunk on a fast break, getting fouled on the play and injuring his left knee on the fall. The Dubs called a timeout and Thompson was helped by teammates off the floor, but he came back in to shoot the free throws. With chants of “M-V-P” reverberating through the crowd, Thompson sunk both free throws to give the Dubs a five-point lead with 2:22 left in the period.
Already without Kevin Durant, who came back from a month-long absence (strained calf) in Game 5, only to rupture his left Achilles, Thompson’s injury took out another Warriors All-Star, but the squad still battled.
Andre Iguodala had his highest scoring game of the postseason, scoring 22 points on 9-for-15 shooting while knocking down a trio of 3-pointers. DeMarcus Cousins labored through the torn quad muscle he suffered back in the first round and had 12 points in 19 minutes, and Shaun Livingston came through with two of his three buckets in the fourth quarter, the last being a fastbreak dunk that put the Dubs up by three with 6:36 left in the game.
But the Raptors re-took the lead for good with a 12-3 run over a 3-minute stretch that put the Dubs down by six with two minutes to go. Draymond Green answered with a 3-pointer to give him a triple-double (11 points, 19 rebounds, 13 assists), and a pair of Curry free throws cut the Dubs’ deficit down to one in the final 20 seconds. After a Toronto turnover, the Warriors regained possession but couldn’t convert.
The Raptors’ defense gave Curry very little room to work with, holding him to 21 points. And offensively, Toronto had a balanced scoring effort with four players scoring north of 20 points. Kyle Lowry had 15 of his 26 points in the first quarter, sharing the team-high with Pascal Siakam, who was 10-for-17 from the floor. Fred VanVleet knocked down five 3-pointers to finish with 22 points, a total matched by Leonard, the NBA Finals MVP.
By the time the game ended, the Dubs were down a pair of All-Stars and several other Warriors were playing through pain. But the 343rd consecutive sellout crowd was on its feet cheering on their Dubs throughout the game, and through the final buzzer. The 2,070th Warriors game at Oracle Arena went down to the wire, ending in heartbreak but also showing the toughness and grit of a team that has called its Oracle Arena home in East Oakland home for 47 seasons.
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