How The Warriors Unleashed Klay Thompson

Klay Thompson

Rockets head coach Mike D'Antoni provided an update on Chris Paul's right hamstring strain that kept him on the bench during Saturday's Game 6 loss to the Warriors.

But he was injured in the final minute of game five, and could only watch in frustration as the Rockets succumbed to the Warriors' second-half onslaught on Saturday. With the possibility of playing this game without Chris Paul, Harden might need to explode for 40 points or more. Paul has averaged 21.1 points, 5.8 assists, 5.9 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game during the postseason. Even so, network execs could have reason to wonder if the lack of novelty could erode viewership - though if the conference championship round has taught us anything, it's that the best ratings tonic is often a seven-game series.

The Rockets scored 39, 22, 16 and 9 points in each of the four quarters of game six.

Reputations and images and legacies also can and will be determined in this winner-take-all battle between the Warriors and Rockets. Stephen Curry came alive.

Trump to make decision on North Korea summit 'next week'
The North Korea flag flutters next to concertina wire at the North Korean embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia March 9, 2017. His spokeswoman, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said Trump was referring to a commitment to seriously discuss denuclearization.

Mindful of what happened right after that series - the Warriors would blow a 3-1 lead of their own to Cleveland - Curry said: "I think we both blocked that whole year out of our memory".

The record was previously held by the Los Angeles Lakers, who, coincidentally, outscored the Warriors by 37 points (73-36) in Game 3 of the 1973 Western Conference Finals. The San Francisco 49ers cornerback took to Twitter after the game to proclaim it was "obvious" the referees wanted the Cavs to force a Game 7.

After being down by 10 at halftime of Game 6, the Warriors trailed by 11 entering the third quarter on Monday night. Gordon responded by making his first four 3-pointers and scoring a rugged 19 points, while Harden - who entered Game 6 having missed 20 consecutive 3-pointers - totaled 32 points after missing his first two shots from long range. With the offense not running through Kevin Durant isolations, it just flowed better (the Warriors best lineup of the night was Curry, Thompson, Draymond Green, Shaun Livingston, and Nick Young, +13 in just more than eight minutes).

How many more times must Morey tweak the Rockets here in the Harden era before Houston finally strikes gold. Between now and tipoff, the Rockets' therapy staff will work on Paul's hamstring, hoping for some intervention from the Medical Gods. Here's what you need to know about Warriors and Rockets going into the Western Conference Finals. With a trip to the Finals on the line, that's not good enough.

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