Friday, December 2 2022

SAN FRANCISCO — Champions have multiple lives. Even when they’re old and not as sharp, they know how to survive as much as win.

The Golden State Warriors winning 101-98 on Monday night at Chase Center was about survival. Holding on against a younger Memphis Grizzlies team slowing the tempo without injured All-Star point guard Ja Morant. Yet the Warriors, who didn’t lead until 45.7 seconds remaining, showed their experience matching it with execution.

Now they’re in another familiar spot trying to close a team out while leading the series 3-1. Game 5 on Wednesday (8:30 p.m., TNT) won’t be easy either but after winning 20 playoff series since 2013, the Warriors know what awaits them at FedExForum.

“Wednesday’s going to be the hardest one yet,” guard Klay Thompson said. “It always is. The closeout.”

KEY DUNK: Veteran Al Horford got dunked on, keyed Celtics‘ NBA playoffs Game 4 win against Bucks | Opinion

WARRIORS POWER: Golden State Warriors pull away from Memphis Grizzlies, who played Game 4 loss without Ja Morant

It might not get as ugly as it did Monday. The Warriors missed their first 15 3-point attempts. Thompson missed all seven of his and shot 6-for-20 overall. Otto Porter Jr. made as many 3-pointers as Stephen Curry (four).

The Warriors didn’t make a field goal for the final 3:25 of regulation. Yet, they pushed past a valiant Grizzlies team that exhausted their clip but misfired on their final bullets. The Warriors outscored them 11-5 in the final 2:32 where Curry and Jordan Poole led a free-throw parade and Dillon Brooks‘ last-second 3-pointer was only meaningful to shrink the final margin.

Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane defends Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson during game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022. Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane defends Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson during game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022.

Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane defends Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson during game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022.

For Mike Brown, coaching in place of Steve Kerr who tested positive for COVID-19, it was simple. The Warriors had Thompson, Curry and Draymond Green, a trio used to finishing games. Add in Poole’s rising profile and there’s trust they’ll find a way even when the Grizzlies had them on the ropes.

“A lot of it has to do with the playoff experience that these guys have but their talent and IQ, in my opinion, is second-to-none,” Brown said.

That’s been the difference this series. The Grizzlies are learning how to manage the playoff ebb and flow. With Morant’s availability for Game 5 up in the air, they’re down their biggest weapon

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and forward Draymond Green celebrate during their 101-98 win against the Memphis Grizzlies in game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022. Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and forward Draymond Green celebrate during their 101-98 win against the Memphis Grizzlies in game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022.

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and forward Draymond Green celebrate during their 101-98 win against the Memphis Grizzlies in game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Chase Center on Monday, May 9, 2022.

The Warriors? They know the course and have mastered it. Even if Game 5 brings a fiery road crowd and a desperate opponent, it’s a challenge they’re well versed in.

After handling a close Game 4, there’s more confidence in what they know as much as what they have on the court. The Grizzlies are still learning that. Meanwhile, the Warriors are on the verge of a sixth conference finals trip in eight years.

“We know how to pull off games like this, whether it happens or not. It’s just about how you approach it and we made that happen,” Curry said.

You can reach Evan Barnes on Twitter (@Evan_B) or by email at evan.barnes@commercialappeal.com

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: Klay Thompson: Game 5 will be ‘hardest one yet’ to eliminate Grizzlies

Source: Yahoo Sports

Previous

Lakers owner Jeanie Buss 'growing impatient' after high-priced roster misses playoffs: 'It was gut-wrenching'

Next

Despite Game 4 loss, Ilya Samsonov’s stellar play bodes well for Capitals

Check Also

Pro Sports Media

Trending Now

Mets free agency and trade buzz: Jose Abreu signing with Astros; Mets expect to go internal at DH

Jose Abreu / Kamil Krzaczynski – USA TODAY Sports Here is the latest free agency and trade buzz surrounding the Mets… Nov. 28, 2:20 p.m. Free agent first baseman/DH Jose Abreu is finalizing a deal with the Houston Astros, per multiple reports. Abreu’s contract with Houston will be for three years, reports Bob Nightengale of […]

Read More

Could Cubs, Astros swap catchers in MLB free agency?

Could Cubs, Astros swap catchers in MLB free agency? originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago It’s been reported this week the Astros have held discussions with Willson Contreras, and earlier in the offseason the Cubs have internally discussed Christian Vazquez. And Thursday, one more national writer weighed in on the intriguing possibility this offseason’s top […]

Read More

Throwback Thursday: Washington picks up first franchise win vs. Giants in 1932

The New York Giants and the Washington Commanders franchise will meet for the 179th time in the regular season this Sunday at MetLife Stadium. The series has been one of the NFL’s longest and storied going back to 1932 when the Washington team was playing in Boston as the Braves and played their games in […]

Read More