The Toronto Raptors and Golden State Warriors were tied at 1-1 following a big 3-pointer by Andre Iguodala in the closing seconds in Game 2 of the 2019 NBA Finals. And to be honest, Toronto missed a golden opportunity to go up 2-0 after blowing a double-digit lead in that contest.
But as luck would have it, the basketball gods were smiling down on the Raptors once again going into Game 3. Because not only is Kevin Durant still out, but Klay Thompson would sit this one out as well. Bearing that mind, all indicators pointed to the Toronto Raptors taking a 2-1 lead over the Warriors in the 2019 NBA Finals.
Early on, the Raptors took full advantage of the opportunity before them. They scored 36 points in the first quarter on 12-for-22 shooting. And in the second quarter, the Raptors led by as many as 14 points with eight minutes left in the period.
Unfortunately, Toronto went into one of its infamous scoring droughts. As a result, Golden State outscored them by a 14-8 margin to trim to halftime deficit to eight points. If you’re a Raptors fan, you could only wonder if your team would falter in these Finals once again.
Having learned their lesson from Game 2, though, the Raptors did not fold this time. When it was all said and done, the road team came away with a 123-109 win. And with the victory, the Raptors have a 2-1 series lead in the NBA Finals.
Without Thompson and KD out of the lineup, Stephen Curry carried the load for the Warriors in this Finals game. He scored 47 points on 14-for-31 shooting. Additionally, he connected on six of his 14 attempts from 3-point range.
“My dad used to tell me the stats don’t matter, just the final score,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse told the Tri City News when asked about Curry’s big night. “So we’ll take the win and be thankful for that.”
Draymond Green (17 points) and Andre Iguodala (11 points) were the only players to score than 10 points.
Meanwhile, the Raptors had a very balanced attack, to say the least. All five of their starters scored in double figures. Kawhi Leonard led the way with 30 points. On top of that Kyle Lowry , who had yet to have a big game in the NBA Finals, chipped in with 23 points and knocked down five of his nine attempts from downtown.
It is also worth noting that Danny Green added 18 points on 6-for-10 shooting. This is significant because he scored 19 points in Games 1 and 2 combined.
All in all, it was a big win for the Raptors following a disappointing loss in Game 2. At the same time, the Raptors did what they were supposed to do in beating a depleted opponent. Thompson is expected to return to the mix for Game 4. Even more importantly, the Warriors are hoping that Durant will be able to play as well.
Bearing that in mind it will be interesting to see if the Raptors will be able to come out with the same energy and effort in Game 4 of the 2019 NBA Finals.