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Warriors Classics: 2015 Round 1, Game 3 vs. Pelicans
NBC Sports Bay Area to Broadcast Classic Game Tonight at 8 p.m.; Steph Curry Sends Game to OT With Clutch Trey
Warriors guard Stephen Curry has had no shortage of iconic moments and performances throughout his decorated career, and somewhere near the top of the list of his most memorable shots was one that occurred in the final seconds of regulation of Game 3 of the Warriors’ first round playoff series against the New Orleans Pelicans.
The situation: The Warriors won the first two games of the series at home but faced an uphill battle in New Orleans in Game 3 when they entered the fourth quarter down by 20 points. The Warriors chipped away at that deficit throughout the quarter, and after New Orleans star Anthony Davis split a pair of free throws with 9.6 seconds left to give the Pelicans a three-point lead, the window was left slightly ajar for the Warriors to make their move.
Curry’s first attempt to tie the game with a three-pointer was off the mark, but teammate Marreese Speights pulled down the rebound and dished it back to Curry in the left corner. Curry caught the pass, and with multiple Pelicans defenders, including the 6-foot-10 Davis and his lengthy wingspan, charging toward him, Curry launched the shot and … swish!!! Game tied, 2.8 seconds left. New Orleans’ Tyreke Evans launched a running 3-pointer at the buzzer, but it was off the mark and the game was destined for overtime.
Curry’s game-tying shot, his second 3-pointer in the final 12 seconds of regulation, capped a 10-point quarter and 40-point night, but he was just one part of the Dubs’ offensive explosion through the fourth. Shaun Livingston (nine points) and Leandro Barbosa (six) combined for 15 points off of the bench in the period. Starters Klay Thompson (five), Draymond Green (five) and Harrison Barnes (four) all added to the swing in momentum, as the Warriors outscored New Orleans 39-19 in the fourth quarter.
The game would remain close through the extra period, but the Warriors came out on top with a 123-119 victory, and complete the sweep of the Pelicans two nights later to move on to the Western Conference Semifinals.
When reflecting on the game recently with beat writer Wes Goldberg, Kerr said that “that first round was a big step for us.”
“There was no reason why we had to look at that season as a stepping stone to a future title. We were trying to convince them that ‘Hey, this is now. We can do this right now,’” Kerr told the team then.
And that they did. After the Pelicans, the Warriors would go on to defeat the Memphis Grizzlies and Houston Rockets en route to the NBA Finals. There, the squad would meet and eventually beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 4-2 to claim the franchise’s first NBA title in 40 years.
Listen to further breakdown of the playoff thriller on the Warriors Sound Podcast with special guest and Warriors play-by-play commentator, Bob Fitzgerald, as they relive that game and series.
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