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Klay Thompson Lifts Warriors Over Pacers


Klay Thompson
Ezra Shaw- Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors were coming off a disappointing loss to the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night after letting a fourth quarter lead slip away. Faced a more difficult challenge in the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday and again nearly got defeated in the closing minutes. Fortunately Klay Thompson who came alive in the fourth quarter took advantage of a mismatch on the defensive end buried a fade-away jumper over George Hill with .6 seconds left.

All-Star Paul George missed a game-winning three off the in-bounds pass. The Warriors defense was excellent and made sure to switch so Indiana couldn’t get the ball to the rim, which forced the long-range jumper that nearly went in.

Stephen Curry started out strong in the first quarter scoring nine points and dishing out four assists and Thompson added seven points helping Golden State to a four point lead after the first quarter. Mark Jackson went to his bench in the second with Jordan Crawford and Draymond Green combining for 12 of the team’s 23 points. At the half the Warriors added two point to their lead.

Leading the way for Indiana in the first half,George who scored 14 points and six rebounds, David West added 11 points and three rebounds and Lance Stephenson eight points. The Pacers came out strong in the third taking a two point lead, yet couldn’t get any separation. Again the Warriors bench played well this time it was Green, Jermaine O’Neal and Harrison Barnes pushing the lead back up to seven before Indiana closed within three points.

With Curry still on the bench to start the fourth it became the Thompson show as he scored 11 of the Warriors first 13 points. After a three for Barnes, the Warriors shooting guard hit another three to push Golden State’s lead to 13.

The Pacers weren’t done as George hit a three and after a Barnes layup, Indiana went on a 10-0 run with West, George and Roy Hibbert all contributing. David Lee who struggled with foul trouble got a fortuitous bounce after what might have become a turnover after Andre Iguodala lost possession of the ball while driving and dislocated his finger as well. This forced Curry to foul to get a substitution, Hill did his best to try to sell that he got fouled while making a three to not avail.

Since it was the last foul in the two minutes it meant free throws for Indiana. A blown call gave George two free throws as the referee ruled that Lee made contact with him and he made both free throws to tie the game up at 96 with just over a minute left.

A careless turnover by Curry gave the ball back to the Pacers with 46.1 seconds left and George wound up missing a three before the shot clock expired. Leaving the Warriors a chance to take the final shot after coming up with the rebound. Mark Jackson didn’t call a timeout until there was 10.9 sec0nds remaining, which allowed for Golden State to find the best match-up and that was Hill defending Thompson.

Thompson calmly backed the smaller Hill down got to his spot turned and swished the jumper for the game-winner.

Leading the way for the Warriors, Thompson who went for 25 points and five rebounds, Curry finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and six assists and Lee added 11 points and five rebounds. For Indiana West finished with 27 points and seven rebounds, George scored 26 points and added 12 rebounds and Hibbert and Stephenson both added 12 points.

Note: The win by the Warriors was the first in seven years in Indiana

 

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Robert D. Cobb
Founder, Publisher and CEO of INSCMagazine. Works have appeared and featured in places such as Forbes, Huffington Post, ESPN and NBC Sports to name a few. Follow me on Twitter at @RobCobb_INSC, email me at [email protected]

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