Technically, this loss for the Golden State Warriors doesn’t mean that they lost the series, as they now trail 3-2. Psychologically, however, it is a different story. To be the sixth seed on the road in Game 7, in a hostile environment is one of the worst possible things that a team could receive. Tuesday night, the Warriors lost a pivotal Game 5 to the Los Angeles Clippers by a final score of 113-103.
This game was played with the same intensity as Game 3 was played with. DeAndre Jordan was a huge factor in the Clippers’ win over the Warriors in Game 3, and tonight, he was equally as instrumental. As the Warriors don’t have any young and defensively-minded big men, Draymond Green was guarding Jordan at times. This meant a field day for the Clipper center, who scored 25 points, grabbed 18 rebounds, and swatted 4 shots. This was his best game of the series, and he picked up for some of Blake Griffin’s slack.
Early in the ballgame, the Warriors were able to contain Griffin, as he got off to a miserable 1/7 start from the field. But in the end, it was Griffin who took and made the big turnaround jump-shots and tough post ups for 18 points.
Meanwhile, Chris Paul, Jamal Crawford, and Darren Collison were hitting every single shot that they took. This made it rather difficult for the Warriors to stay in the ballgame, but luckily, they managed to do so, trailing LAC just 55-50 at the half.
Through all the scratching and clawing, the Warriors could never seem to pull within 3 points of the Clippers, until Stephen Curry, who scored 17 points, was able to get a steal, and hit a 3-pointer, giving the Warriors the lead. Right after that, Paul, who scored 20 points, hit a 3-pointer, and the Warriors never recovered from that deficit. The 3rd quarter was even at 22 points each, but from then on, the lead continued to grow.
The Warriors desperately tried to escape a double-digit deficit, but in the end, Jamal Crawford, who finished with 19 points, wouldn’t be stopped. Between he, Collison, and Paul, the Warriors didn’t know who to guard. What can be said except the Clippers came to play, and they outplayed their opponents.
The series is headed back to Oracle where the Warriors will look to defend their home court and grab the win, sending the series to a Game 7. Many said this series would go to seven, and so far, the physicality and the level of aggressiveness that we were hoping for has been there.