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Warriors vs Thunder Playoff Preview: Golden State Begins Epic Comeback?

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The Warriors return home on the edge of extinction from this years playoffs. Is this where they right the ship? Or will this be the end their magical season?

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Matchup
Retro Warriors
Thunder 3
Golden State Warriors
1-3 (1-1 HOME)
vs
Oklahoma City Thunder
3-1 (1-1 ROAD)
Details
May 26, 2016
Oracle Arena — Oakland, CA
6 p.m. PST
TNT | KNBR 680 AM
Blog Buddy: Welcome to Loud City
Projected Starters
Stephen Curry G Russell Westbrook
Klay Thompson G Andre Roberson
Harrison Barnes F Kevin Durant
Draymond Green F Serge Ibaka
Andrew Bogut C Steven Adams
Key Injuries
None
None

★★★

Team Overviews

Warriors vs Thunder Game 4 recap: Much the same from Game 3 spilled into Game 4. The Thunder looked unbeatable and the Warriors looked just rattled enough to fall apart in the end

  • Golden State shot well enough again, 41% from the field. They allowed the Thunder to shoot 43%. The Thunder were more aggressive, though, getting to the line 40 times, where the Warriors missed 10 of their 29 attempts
  • The killer: 21 turnovers from the Warriors. Their carelessness with the ball all season came back to haunt them again. The Thunder had 18 turnovers themselves, but that should have been Golden State's chance to come back. Instead they "out-mistaked" the Thunder all night.
  • Klay Thompson scored 19 straight points in the 3rd quarter after the Warriors fell behind 19 at the break. Golden State got the game back within single digits, however produced a 12-point 4th quarter to kill their chances of the comeback.
  • The Thunder had an answer for every Warriors run throughout the night. They had a balanced attack, with Russell Westbrook getting the triple-double again. All five of their starters were in double digit scoring
  • The Warriors on the other hand — only three players in double digits, including a 1-7 showing from Draymond Green. Have his head and emotions taken him out of the series completely? His +/- in the last two games: -73.

Keys to the Game

  • Stop the Thunder: The Warriors have been unable to limit the Thunder from scoring all series long. Can they solve the matchups and offensive aggression of OKC before it is too late?
  • Start scoring points: Draymond Green says Stephen Curry is playing at "70%" on his injured knee. Can the hope crowd help improve on his 2-10 game from three in Game 4?
  • Find some answers: Can the Warriors get back to winning before it's too late? Maybe change up the lineup. Maybe shorten the rotation. Anything to change the mojo of the series.

Final Thoughts

The quotes after Game 4 have been consistent from Warriors players: "This is not how this is supposed to end."

Well guys, it's time to put up or go home.

You remember when you said that 73 wins during the season means nothing without a title? Well, here is your chance to prove that. You haven't even made the Finals yet, and you are letting a team with equal talent make you look like an eight seed. Instead of running your offense, you are taking and missing hard shots, not stopping the Thunder from abusing you on penetration, getting flustered when Kevin Durant and Co. make runs and not looking anything like the defending NBA champs.

The home crowd will be behind you for Game 5, and we will all be thinking "Hey, this is good, but you better be back for a Game 7." We knew you were going to have to win one in OKC and sweep the rest of your home games. Now you are out of excuses. Get this done before it is too late.

My prediction

Warriors take this game 110-102, and it's close all game long. Game 6 in OKC becomes like Game 7 — and the Warriors get to try to win on the road to push this series to its limits.