Golden State Did What They Had To Do

Houston better find something quick or this series is about to end.

Jim Rome
May 01, 2019 - 9:45 am
Steph Curry

USA Today


Solid Game 2 of the Rockets v. Warriors last night. And it’s a damn good thing too because that series was on the verge of coming off the rails. And not in a good way either. And it was because it had nothing to do with the guys playing the game, and everything to do with the guys calling the game. All about the Rockets working the refs; and by working the refs, I mean crying about the refs. Not about James Harden and Chris Paul, but rather about how much Harden and Paul hate Scott Foster; and about how the Rockets dropped a dossier alleging that the refs cost them a championship last year. In other words, about pretty much everything, except the MAIN THING. 

So when Scott Foster was assigned to the game, all hell was expected to break loose. It wasn’t a matter of who would foul out, but how many guys and how quickly? And who would get tossed?

But luckily it didn’t. In fact, you had comments after the game like this.

Wait, was that Draymond Green? Yes, it was Draymond Green. And he had more

And he wasn’t alone. Steve Kerr and Kevin Durant were also giving them love. And it’s a good thing, because what should have been the best series of the year, looked like it was going to be the worst after Game 1.

And for all the complaining about the officiating before the game, there wasn’t actually much complaining during the game. And if you get past Chris Paul lamely, mockingly celebrating one foul, it was all pretty legit. At least when it comes to complaining. Because the rest of the game was rough. Golden State did what they had to do and the Warriors aren’t about to apologize for how it looked. Which is a good thing. Because it didn’t look great.

Less than four minutes into the game, there was Steph Curry’s dislocating his middle digit. And if you haven’t seen it, you probably don’t want to either. It looked like one of those bent pens chiropractors give you for free at the mall: you know, that free pen with that free spinal exam, next to the tool who’s flying that model airplane around adjacent to the food court. Or if you do want to see it, and you’re watching us on CBS SPORTS NETWORK, here it is. 

That’s just wrong. I’m no doctor, but I don’t think I need to be to know fingers aren’t supposed to have a right angle like that. I sucked at geometry, but even I know that. And as long as we’re talking about jacked up body parts that don’t look the way they’re supposed to; how about James Harden’s eyes:

If Steph Curry looked like something from the Saw franchise, James Harden was The Shining. His eyes opening were like the elevator doors opening and blood rushing out.

Harden took a shot to the face in the lane early and ended up bleeding coming from the eye. And then everyone in the world made the oh so hilarious joke about him looking baked. I guess if you hit the bong hard enough, it will make your eyes bleed. But so will Draymond Green if cracks you in the face had enough. And he did. 

And if that’s a regular season game, the beard’s probably not out there. Because he couldn’t see. And was covering his eyes to shield them from the lights. My guy needed to break out the Antoine Carr shades for the rest of the game.

So of course when one future Hall of Famer has a jacked up digit and another has jacked up eyes, the game probably isn’t going to be all that watchable. And it wasn’t. Golden State made sure of that. And that has to concern the hell out of the Rockets.

The old adage, of course, is that a playoff series doesn’t start until someone wins on the road, Houston better find something quick or this series is about to end. After going to Game Six in LA just a few days ago, Golden State is already up 2-0 and they still haven’t played their best basketball. Not even close.

Sure, Houston can con itself into believing that both games were close and they could just as easily be up two games to none as they are down 0-2. But they’re not. And if they’re not worried, they should be.

Kevin Durant has had a pair of nice scoring nights, but he hasn’t exploded. Neither has Curry. Or Klay. But they are absolutely killing the Rockets on defense and on the glass. They had 14 more shots that the Rockets. If they go to Houston and play that kind of defense, and then get anything on offense, that’s your series. Thanks for coming, time to work on a new dossier and cry about the league ripped another title from you. 

When that Hamptons Five lineup is out there and locked in on defense, good luck getting anything going. They are shutting down one of the all-time great offenses in NBA history. Clint Capela was a non-factor in Game 1 and only a somewhat factor in Game 2. The lobs to him that destroyed teams all season are having no impact when you’ve got KD, Draymond, Iggy, Klay, and Steph out there.

Hell, Steph damn near lost his finger trying to strip Capela in the first quarter and he was there rejecting him in the second.

When asked afterwards if that block hurt, he said “What do you think?” yeah it hurt, ya tool. . I have a dislocated finger that is bending five different ways right now. But when asked if he regretted it, Curry respond: “Nah, I ain’t got a block like that in a minute. So I’ll take the pain.”

Full-blown Dalton from Road House. Pain don’t hurt. That’s how locked in these guys are.

And speaking of locked in, now is a good time to show some respect to Andre Iguodala. Remember last year, when Rockets fans talked about how the series would’ve been different if Chris Paul was healthy and the Warriors pointed out that it would’ve been different if Andre Iguodala was healthy? Now you see why.

16 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists. An absolute monster on defense and one soul-destroying lob after another on offense. And cleaning up on the offensive glass. It would be ridiculous to say that Iguodala does all the little things, because that would mean ignoring the big things that he does. Just like it would be stupid to call him a “heady” player because that ignores how insanely athletic he is.

And it would be insane to call him 35, even though that’s what his birth certificate says he is. As Kerr said: “He doesn’t look 35 to me. He’s just an incredible athlete. What makes Andre special is when you combine his athleticism with that brain. Now you’ve got one hell of a player.”

Iguodala said that if he’d been healthy last year, it would’ve been a much shorter series. Like five games total. He’s healthy this year and if Houston doesn’t get right, get to the glass, take care of the rock and hit the beard with some viseline, this one will be over in five games. Because I know this; no one in hell Houston beats Golden State four times in five games; not if the Warriors lock in two more times. Houston’s not beating them and neither is anyone else.