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Los Angeles Clippers 98 FinalRecap | Box Score 96 Golden State Warriors
David Lee, PF 32 MIN | 6-15 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 12 PTS | 0 Lee has been outclassed by a more formidable frontcourt this entire series. With his center out of the lineup, Lee’s weaknesses on defense and lack of strength of inside are clear. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan are making life a living hell for Lee, who besides the second half of Game 1 has had a brutal series. Lee was subbed out with 8:26 left in the 3Q and not seen from again until 8:37 left in the 4Q. Jackson opten for Draymond Green to cover Blake Griffin, who did a fantastic job for most of the night until fouling out. Lee is getting bullied inside on every backfrom from Griffin, and it’s getting tough to watch considering how consistent Griffin is with his physicality. The Warriors could (and should) be doubling Griffin more to help Lee, but haven’t done so as much as they need to. Curry is shading Matt Barnes, and Curry helping off Barnes and leaving him open is a better option than seeing Griffin dominate every time down the floor. Griffin has added a jump shot to his arsenal, and while Mark Jackson can continue to let Griffin shoot those shots, if he’s hitting, there’s not much else you can do besides doubling every time down. On the offensive side, Lee is getting boxed out nearly every time down and unable to finish his usual array of putbacks. You can count the number of missed bunnies with two hands, and Jordan has a lot to do with that. It makes you wonder what a healthy Andrew Bogut would be operating if he was healthy and the presence inside that he’s known to be, but that’s beside the point now. Lee has to gain confidence in his midrange jumper again and help spread the floor. If not, it’ll be more of Griffin guarding him on-ball with Jordan waiting in the wings.

Andre Iguodala, SF 41 MIN | 4-9 FG | 3-7 FT | 9 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 11 PTS | -2 Andre Iguodala showed some life on the offensive end on Thursday, but it wasn’t nearly enough to make up for the Splash Brothers shooting woes. Andre showed up his athleticism on two plays in specific: a driving throwdown with his right hand and an alley-oop finish from near halfcourt from his point-guard. They are signs that the Iguodala that the Warriors saw last season is still an option, it just hasn’t happened this season. He was slightly more aggressive on that end of the floor on Thursday, but he still has opted to run the offense and become a pass-first point-forward with this team. He was acquired for his defense, veteran leadership and the ability to handle the ball. It’s almost as if Iguodala had those ideas cemented in his head all season and can’t change the programming. He’s had JJ Redick guarding him for a lot of the series, and we’ve seen him backdown Redick this series but not yet isolate and drive by him or become a consistent threat through his jumper. With Mark Jackson opting for a smaller lineup for much of this game, Iguodala had the opportunity to feast on the opposition but never made any consistent effort to do so. With Curry being hounded by multiple Clippers defenders nearly every time down the floor and Lee struggling inside, a third scorer is needed. His defense has stayed consistent, but I’d try and let Iguodala guard Griffin or even Chris Paul at times, just to switch looks. His rebounding with Bogut out is needed, but it’s the scoring department where the team needs him more than ever right now.

Jermaine O’Neal, C 16 MIN | 3-5 FG | 4-4 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 10 PTS | -12 Jermaine O’Neal has the near impossible task of trying to replace everything that Andrew Bogut did on a nightly basis. His minutes aren’t great, and he’s stayed consistent in his ability to cause free-throw lane violations. Any points from O’Neal are welcome, especially second-chance points that come off misses (which there have been a ton of through three games). Jordan is simply a freak athlete and insane energy player, which isn’t the best combination for an 18-year veteran. O’Neal guarding Griffin might be a decent look for a few possessions, but Griffin’s speed will just be too much for O’Neal to handle in the long run. He’s done a decent job this series all considered, and with Lee on the bench for the majority of the second half, a changing of rotations might be in the cards for Game 4. Will Jackson start Game 4 with the team’s most efficient lineup (and the lineup that brought the team back in Game 3) with Curry-Thompson-Iguodala-Green-Lee? This isn’t a slight to O’Neal, just a simple reality based off the matchup at hand. Just ask Roy Hibbert.

Stephen Curry, PG 43 MIN | 5-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 2 REB | 15 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 16 PTS | -1 Was it a foul? The way the game was being called I don’t believe it was. The way the rules delegate what a foul is or isn’t, it probably was a foul. NBA games are hardly consistent when it comes to officiating, in fact they’re the exact opposite. On Thursday, I thought the officials did a solid job all night calling the game fairly loose and fair both ways. There were certain calls (Draymond Green’s last foul, for example) that were questionable, but those 50-50 calls happen in every single game. Now, for Curry’s actual play. He’s not shooting the ball well at all, that’s obvious. The more important questions are why this is happening and if it’s a fixable issue. The Clippers are doubling the high pick-and-roll nearly every time, forcing the ball out of Curry’s hands and letting anyone but him beat them. Early in this game, Curry was running off the ball and forcing a hobbled Chris Paul to chase him in the halfcourt. You have to wonder what more Curry off-ball situations would do for this offense, but Curry has to be selfish when he’s presented with any one-on-one opportunities. If there’s anyone who should be isolating, it’s him, and instead of forcing it inside to David Lee when a big has switched onto him, take advantage of the matchup and create something for himself. Driving inside and looking for a call, using the patented floater or just pulling up are all better options than the aforementioned post-up. The Warriors have lived and died by Curry’s shot this season, and it’s often saved them. Hell, it almost saved them on Thursday had Curry got a clean look on the final possession or one more bucket was made along the way during their run in the final stanza. The Clippers are making him look mortal, and credit Doc Rivers for sticking with his game plan and leaving Mark Jackson with no more moves to make. We’ve seen Curry make tough shots all season, but they’re not hitting now and the team hasn’t had any consistent string of buckets or offensive flow that truly lets Curry unleash his will. 

Klay Thompson, SG 42 MIN | 10-22 FG | 4-4 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 26 PTS | +6 Thompson did a fantastic job on Chris Paul. Paul has shot sub-40% for the last two games and hasn’t really gotten going on the offensive end with exception of the last quarter of Game 1. Credit Thompson, who has taken the tougher of the backcourt assignments all season. Make no mistake: Thompson has been the best offensive player for the Warriors this series. He’s been the more impressive Splash Brother while guarding Chris Paul. He’s getting better looks than Curry because of the defense, but Thompson has stepped up with exception of the team’s collective “effort” in Game 2. He was 8/11 from inside the three-point arc and 2/11 outside it, contributing to an abysmal 6/31 effort from deep for the team. Thompson acknowledged after the game that he missed plenty of open looks as well, including a three with 3:29 left that would’ve tied the game. Three games into the series it’s hard to imagine Mark Jackson suddenly changing his entire offensive scheme or rotations, so the open looks will stay there for Thompson. If he starts hitting consistently, the Clippers might be forced to adjust. His 26 points and defense kept the Warriors at bay, and he’ll need to stay at this level of play if the team hopes to make this a long series. 

Quote of the game:

We did survive. Give Golden State credit, they made a hell of a comeback at the end. We knew they weren’t going to give up. We knew they weren’t going away. They have so many shot makers on their team. I was happy with our defensive execution down the stretch, but we let their guys get lose and that bothered me. Overall, we did enough to win. I didn’t think we played great. i thought we played good. I thought a lot of guys gave great efforts. Blake [Griffin] was just a man. He was awesome for us. Chris [Paul] was struggling, but then down the stretch he took over for us, and that’s basically what we need.” — Doc Rivers

Looking ahead: The Warriors now have two full days off before Game 4, which is slated to start at 12:30 PST.

Your Blake Griffin shot chart of the night:

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Your Stephen Curry shot chart through three games:


Your blender of the night:


Your Andre Iguodala dunk of the night: 

Your alley-oop of the night:

Your Inside the NBA moment of the night: 



Tweets of the night:

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