Warriors Bounce Back with Game 2 Victory

Established 1946 | 7-time NBA Champions

The Warriors broke open what was a two-point game at the half with a third quarter blitz and evened the 2022 NBA Finals on Sunday night with a 107-88 win at Chase Center.

Stephen Curry got the third quarter splash party started and Jordan Poole put the exclamation point on the period, pulling up and hitting a 3-pointer from just inside half-court as time expired. Poole’s trey was the Warriors’ seventh 3-pointer of the quarter, during which the Dubs outscored Boston 35-14.


With the series tied at 1-1, the NBA Finals now go back East with Games 3 and 4 in Boston on Wednesday and Friday, respectively. After that, the series will come back to San Francisco for Game 5 on Monday, June 13.

After a 15-point first half, Stephen Curry got hot in the third quarter. His driving layup at the 10:53 mark put the Dubs in front for good, initiating a 13-2 run for the Dubs, and the Warriors built on their lead from there. Curry hit three 3-pointers in the period, the last of the heat check variety that capped a separate 11-0 run, and he would finish with 14 of his game-high 29 points in the period.

While Curry set the tone for the dominant third quarter, Jordan Poole provided a dramatic finish to it. After struggling in the first half, Poole checked in with 1:19 left in the third period and played near-flawless ball for the remainder of the period. His drive set up an easy Looney basket and on the next possession he knocked down a deep step-back 3-pointer. With momentum on the Warriors’ side, Poole had the ball in his hands with time running out in the period. He put a move on his defender, gathered his feet and launched a 39-footer. The shot swished through the net for Poole’s second of four 3-pointers on the night. The third-year guard finished with 17 points, 14 of those coming in the second half.

One of the top moments in the game occurred with 5:30 left in the first quarter when Gary Payton II checked into the game and received a warm ovation from the Chase Center crowd. Playing for the first time since fracturing his left elbow in the opening minutes of Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals, Payton made the most of his minutes on the floor, scoring seven points on 3-for-3 shooting while tallying three rebounds and three assists. Payton was a plus-15 in his 25 minutes of game action, which was more than any other Warriors reserve on Sunday.

From the game’s opening possession, the Dubs’ showed extra attentiveness on defense. And even though Boston started off hot, the Warriors’ stuck with it on the defensive end and held Boston to 37.5 percent shooting for much of the game. The Celtics made more than half of their 3-point shots in the first half but were 7-of-25 on two-point attempts over the first two periods. Draymond Green and Kevon Looney led the defensive charge, and the entire team reaped the awards with five Dubs having multiple steals.

And speaking of Looney, the Warriors' starting center made his mark on the game in ways other than just his defense. He made all six of his shot attempts, becoming the sixth player in Finals history to make that many shots without a miss. Looney finished the game with 12 points and was the Dubs' third leading scorer.

The Celtics’ hot perimeter shooting from the end of Game 1 carried over into Game 2, with Boston hitting on their first five shot attempts of the game. The lone Celtic not to shoot it well on Thursday, Jayson Tatum had the hot hand throughout the first half, hitting 5-of-7 from distance for 21 first half points (he finished with 28). The Celtics led by as many as nine points in the first quarter, but the Warriors proved to be up to the challenge.

The Dubs rallied and took a one-point advantage when Curry banked home a floater on a drive from the right side in the final second of the first quarter. Boston would go back up by five via their 3-point shooting, but a 10-0 Dubs run midway through the period game the Warriors a five-point lead, their largest advantage to that point.

The teams would trade the lead back and forth four more times for the remainder of the half, and Andrew Wiggins’ putback put the Dubs ahead by two in the final seconds of the first half. By the time time expired on the second quarter, there were already eight lead changes and six ties, but the Dubs quickly opened things up with a strong start to the third quarter.