Warriors vs. Clippers Was A Playoff Series For The Ages

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Apr 19, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul (3) steals the ball from Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) in the final seconds of game one during the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Warriors won 109-105. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Game 1: GSW 109 – LAC 105 (Warriors lead 1-0) 

This feels like so long ago.

Remember when the Clippers jumped out to that 12-1 lead before the Warriors even got their heads in the game, and everyone declared the series over? Or how the Warriors battled back, somehow, someway taking a double-digit lead in the fourth quarter?

Harrison Barnes wound up making the plays of the game. With the Warriors down 103-102 with under two minutes to go, Barnes blocked Darren Collison on a fastbreak, then hustled back down to the other end of the court, drilling a three to put the Warriors ahead.

The Warriors won Game 1, stunning Staples Center and showed everyone that they were more than capable of hanging with the Clippers.

Game 2 – LAC 138 – GSW 98 (Series tied 1-1) 

This was the game I went to while I was down in L.A., and all I have to say is that I want the money I spent back for the way too expensive tickets in the nosebleed section.

First of all, I was so I high up that I could barely make out who the players on the court were, so it just looked like 10 guys playing a pickup game. Second, it looked like the Warriors were actually treating it like a pickup game.

The final score was 138-98, and the highlight of the game for me was the “Kiss Cam” zooming in on a guy sitting in an entirely empty row of seats, all by himself. It was comic relief for what was a brutal game in every which way for the Warriors.

If Game 1 was the Warriors showing the Clippers that they weren’t backing down without a fight, Game 2 was the Clippers showing the Warriors just what they were up against. “Domination” would be an understatement. The Clippers shut down Stephen Curry, and the Warriors’ offense was nonexistent. Meanwhile, Blake Griffin had his way against the Bogut-less Warriors, scoring 35 points.

Game 3 – LAC 98 – GSW 96 (Clippers lead 2-1) 

The Warriors had no business winning this game, but if not for the referees swallowing their whistles, they would have.

Down 98-96, but with the ball and eight seconds to work with, the Warriors handed it to Curry and let him operate. Curry, guarded by Paul, wound up taking and missing a three-pointer badly, as the ball never even hit the rim. However, replays showed the Paul may have fouled Curry a number of times, grabbing him around the waist, then making contact with his elbow as Curry shot the ball, and finally not giving Curry enough room to land on the way down.

But there was no whistle. Curry wound up on the floor, exasperated, while the Clippers escaped with a two-point win on the road to regain control of the series.

Little did they know that their world would be changed dramatically in the next 24 hours.