TORONTO — The Golden State Warriors aren’t letting go of the NBA title simply but.
With Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson taking pictures and Draymond Inexperienced swatting, the champions discovered a approach to win even after a gut-wrenching loss.
Curry scored 31 factors, Thompson added 26 and so they led a season-saving surge lengthy after Kevin Durant was injured once more to present the Warriors a 106-105 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Monday night time in Recreation 5 of the NBA Finals.
Devastated by the lack of Durant, the All-Stars that the Warriors had left made certain there was celebration together with their disappointment.
“I’ve seen it time and again. So it’s not likely shocking, that is who they’re,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr mentioned.
Curry and Thompson, nicknamed the Splash Brothers, mixed for 3 straight 3-pointers within the closing minutes after Toronto had taken a six-point lead with underneath 3½ minutes remaining in entrance of a raucous, red-shirted crowd.
“Even taking place six with three minutes left, their ball, we didn’t panic,” Thompson mentioned. “We simply do what we do.”
The Warriors misplaced Durant barely 1 / 4 after getting him again however received the win, slicing Toronto’s result in 3-2 and sending the collection again to Oracle Area for Recreation 6 on Thursday.
Kawhi Leonard scored 26 factors for the Raptors however couldn’t get the ultimate shot, which went to Kyle Lowry and was blocked by Inexperienced.
The 2-time defending champion Warriors had been minutes away from their title reign ending, having misplaced Durant and a 14-point lead throughout an emotionally exhausting recreation. They’d managed Leonard for 3 quarters, however he scored 10 straight Toronto factors within the fourth and the Raptors had been near their first championship and a celebration that may have stretched coast to coast in Canada.
However even after the whole lot the Warriors had misplaced, they nonetheless had two of the most effective perimeter shooters on the planet on the ground. Thompson hit a 3, and Curry adopted with one to tie it at 103. Golden State received it again to Thompson and the Raptors overlooked him simply lengthy sufficient for the tiebreaking shot with 57 seconds to go.
Toronto reduce it to at least one when Kyle Lowry was credited with a basket and the Raptors received a closing likelihood when DeMarcus Cousins was referred to as for an unlawful display screen. Leonard had the ball however the Warriors compelled him to cross and it ended up within the nook to Lowry, however Inexperienced sprinted over to get a hand on his shot because the buzzer sounded.
“He received a bit of it, that’s what nice defenders do,” Lowry mentioned. “He received a bit of it and we’ll proceed to take a look at it and see how we will be higher for the subsequent recreation.”
Cousins had 14 factors for the Warriors and Inexperienced completed with 10 factors, 10 rebounds and eight assists.
Golden State is the one crew to lose a 3-1 lead within the NBA Finals, when Cleveland got here again to win in 2016.
Now the Warriors have an opportunity to tug off the feat themselves, however it grew to become tougher after Durant limped off within the second quarter after he had missed the earlier 9 video games with a strained proper calf.
The 2-time NBA Finals MVP was making an attempt to dribble previous Serge Ibaka early within the second quarter when he all of the sudden got here to a cease, misplaced the ball and limped sideways earlier than grabbing at his decrease proper calf as he fell to the court docket.
Followers at first cheered however then, spurred partially by some Raptors gamers, chanted “KD! KD!” as he was helped to the locker room space joined by Curry, Andre Iguodala and basic supervisor Bob Myers.
Durant left the world on crutches with what a tearful Myers mentioned was an Achilles tendon damage and the Warriors mentioned he would get an MRI on Tuesday.
They had been initially OK with out him as a result of Cousins — who returned from damage himself on this collection — got here off the bench to attain their subsequent seven factors earlier than feeding Inexperienced for a layup that gave them a 48-37 lead. It received as excessive as 13 on Curry’s four-point play, and Golden State led 62-56 at halftime.
However ultimately it could come right down to Curry and Thompson, who each logged greater than 41 minutes and should be able to go once more Thursday in what would be the closing recreation in Oracle Area.
Lowry had 18 factors and Marc Gasol scored 17 for the Raptors, who had been making an attempt to present Canada its first championship in one of many conventional main sports activities because the Blue Jays received the World Collection in 1993.
Followers had been ready by means of on-and-off rain all day — some since Sunday — to observe at one of many outside watch events which have popped up in and round Toronto. The group inside the world that included hockey Corridor of Famer Wayne Gretzky and former Raptors star Vince Carter thought it could witness historical past as Leonard powered previous his defenders repeatedly within the fourth quarter.
However the Raptors wanted another basket, and the one method the native followers can see them win in particular person is that if it goes the total seven video games and Toronto wins it at house on Sunday.
“We had an opportunity to win a championship tonight and we didn’t do it,” guard Fred VanVleet mentioned. “We didn’t play effectively sufficient, we didn’t execute sufficient down the stretch and that stings a bit of bit.”
Warriors: Golden State additionally misplaced Kevon Looney once more after he aggravated his damage to higher physique cartilage. … Durant completed with 11 factors. He got here in averaging 31.7 factors per recreation within the NBA Finals, trailing solely Rick Barry and Michael Jordan on the profession listing.
Raptors: Serge Ibaka scored 15 factors and VanVleet had 11 off Toronto’s bench.
Golden State hosts Recreation 6 on Thursday night time.