Key storylines for Warriors-Spurs heading into Game 3

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Warriors
Photo via: Kelley L. Cox/ USA TODAY Sports

The red-hot shooting of Klay Thompson

No other player in this series has left as big an imprint as Klay Thompson. Using the gift that has made him into the elite player he is today, his sweet stroke has been crippling any chance of a Spurs upset.

Warriors
Photo via: Kelley L Cox/ USA TODAY Sports

In the opening game of the series, Thompson shot an impressive 11-13 from the field and 5-6 from beyond the arc. Thompson went 7-8 from the field in the second half which resulted in the Warriors being able to pull away to take the opening game of the series.

In the second game at Oracle Arena, Thompson carried on with his marksmanship, ending the night with 31 points. However, it was his fourth-quarter scoring that drew most of the headlines. Thompson would score 16 of Golden State’s 36 points and connect on all six of his shots (along with two free-three attempts) in the final quarter.

To sum up how well Thompson is shooting, in the two games so far in the series, Thompson is shooting a combined 69.6 FG% and a 71.4 3PT%. It is the second half in which Thompson has showcased his scoring ability, scoring 18 second-half points in game one followed by more success in game two with 24 second-half points.

I feel sorry for Dejountae Murray coming off all those 0ff-ball screens.

The lack of help surrounding LaMarcus Aldridge

Outside of the first game in which everyone on the Spurs roster struggled mightily (excluding Rudy Guy…maybe), LaMarcus Aldridge has had limited support from his teammates all series long. In game two where Aldridge tried (but failed) to will San Antonio to a victory by scoring 34 points and collecting 12 rebounds, only Patty Mills contributed anything close to helpful in that game with 21 points.

Aldridge is averaging 24 points in the first two games. The next closest on the Spurs is Gay with 13.5 PPG.

He! Needs! Help!

Will San Antonio prove to be a completely different team at home?

While it came as no surprise that the Warriors would defend their home-court in game one and two, there is a good reason to believe that San Antonio can do the exact same. In the regular season, the Spurs were 33-8 at home and were completely opposite on the road going 14-27.

Golden State, on the other hand, seems to bring the same level of play wherever they are, going 29-12 in both home and away games this season. Without Stephen Curry, the Warriors are missing a valuable member of their team who would help on these tough road playoff games. Fortunately for the Bay Area, they have three other All-Stars and veteran role players who have stepped up so far and look to continue their strong series.

Three-Point Shooting

For those who may not know, The Warriors are pretty good at shooting three’s.

In the regular season, the Warriors took sole possession in the NBA in three-point percentage at 39.1%. San Antonio ranked T-25th at 35.2%.

These percentages have shown their relative worth in the first two games with the Warriors shooting 47.1 % and San Antonio only connecting on 26% of their three-point attempts. While these two teams play a completely different brand of basketball, it is obvious to see that the Warriors want to turn each game into a three-point contest. San Antonio, on the other hand, has tried to match that and it is simply a battle they won’t win. Even at home.

Playing for Pop

Warriors
Photo via: Nick Wass/ AP

The NBA world was devastated to hear that Gregg Popovich‘s wife passed away Wednesday afternoon. All who will be in attendance will assuredly show their support and condolences for one of the greatest coaches this league has to offer. While winning a playoff game is not the priority for San Antonio Thursday night, it will be a great show of support and energy from the Spurs faithful. It will be interesting to see how an inspired team, who looks to pick up their head coach, comes out in game 3.

Our thoughts are with you, Pop.

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