Warriors sweep Jazz, advance to conference finals

by Leon Thompson May 9, 2017, 7:48

In a matter of minutes during the fourth quarter of Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals, the Golden State Warriors star got into a war of words with a Utah Jazz fan sitting courtside, cursed at the mascot and got a technical foul for shoving Rudy Gobert in the back.

Golden State improved to 8-0 in the postseason after leading wire to wire against Utah. It's the first time in National Basketball Association history that two teams have started the playoffs with respective 8-0 records. Golden State dampened the Utah offense, holding them to under 100 points for the third time in the series.

Now they await the victor of the Rockets and Spurs series, which sits at 2-2.

It sure seems like we're destined for a third straight Finals matchup between the last two National Basketball Association champions.

Coach Mike Brown doesn't expect another start like two weeks ago when his team made 14 of their first 17 shots, but he is hoping for another quick start like the first three games of the series against the Jazz. Draymond Green ignited Golden State with five three-pointers in the first half of Game 2, allowing the Warriors to have a comfortable lead for most of the night.

Either way, a rested, steamrolling Warriors team will be awaiting as monster favorites, having won 23 of their last 24 games dating back to mid-March and all eight of their playoff games by margins of 12, 29, 6, 25, 12, 11, 11 and 26 points. He finished with 17 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds.

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Cavs haven't lost a playoff game since Klay Thompson told LeBron James it's a "man's league".

Thompson rebounded from a six-point effort in Game 3 with back-to-back jumpers out the gate. Then Steph Curry hit a pair of 3s. During one of Utah's second quarter runs, he stemmed the tide with a pair of jumpers. Despite the sweep, the Jazz put up a fight and had a great season.

And while the Jazz held sturdy at times, there really was never any doubt. In four games, the Trail Blazers could not produce on victory against the Warriors. The Warriors are 5-1 straight up and 3-3 ATS, but they have yet to win any of those games by more than 11 points.

The Utah Jazz just had their first 50-win season in seven years.

But Utah responded with a 14-2 flurry to start the second quarter, slicing through a now too relaxed Warriors defense as a sluggish David West failed to protect the rim. Hood left the game with a right knee sprain in the fourth quarter and did not return. The result was a fast 20-point lead (33-13) and a 22 point Golden State lead after one. "We got blitzed. It would have been easy for that game to run away early, for us to keep it, throughout the course of the game to keep with within striking distance, speaks to how they approached the whole year". The Jazz were 18-15 during the regular season when Hill missed games.

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