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Preview: Warriors airlifting brooms to San Antonio for Game 4 contest

The defending champions are on the precipice of a fourth straight sweep of a Western Conference opponent. With the Pelicans waiting in Round 2, the Warriors look to finish off Spurs quickly.

San Antonio Spurs v Golden State Warriors - Game Two Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

This preview is presented to you as a joint venture between the Golden State of Mind blog and the good folks at the NBA: National Brooms Association.

Game Details

WHO: Warriors vs. Spurs

WHAT: Round 1, Game 4 — Warriors up 3-0 in series

WHEN: Sunday, April 22; 12:30 p.m PST

WHERE: AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas

WATCH: ABC

LISTEN: 95.7 The Game

Blog Buddy: Pounding the Rock

Injury Report

A not-so-fun domination for the Dubs

DubNation, if I had told you before the season started that, in the first round of playoffs, the Golden State Warriors would be heading into Texas with a 3-0 lead over the mighty San Antonio Spurs, I’m sure you would have reacted like this:

Yet, now that the defending champions are holding the beleaguered Spurs by their throat over the edge of “Elimination Mountain,” there’s a muted sense of anticipation for me. The passing of Spurs headmaster Gregg Popovich’s wife Erin has cast a pall of grief over this series. It’s difficult to truly dig the funky, groovy feeling that is derived from your team body-slamming a heated rival after such a non-basketball tragedy befalls them during battle.

In addition, the Warriors’ golden child Stephen Curry and San Antonio’s super-machine Kawhi Leonard are missing this series because of injuries. Those two generational talents carry such star-power and intrigue; their absence has removed some of the luster from this contest for the NBA. Fortunately, we’ve received some good news on the Curry injury front: he’s returned to practice, and he’s most likely going to return in Round 2.

The carnage so far

Clearly, the Dubs don’t need Curry for this Spurs dismantling. Here are some quick numbers through three games:

  • Warriors are averaging 113 points per game, shooting 52.7% from the field, 41% from the three-point stripe.
  • Spurs are averaging 96.7 PPG, on 41.3% shooting, 24% from downtown.
  • Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson have activated “Deep Blue Sea” mode, splashing Spurs defenders with impunity. Durant is averaging 27 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists on 52% shooting. Those are MVP type numbers, folks.
  • Thompson is 13-of-20 from the arc this series, a ridiculous 65%. For reference, that is a HIGHER percentage than he’s shooting from the field (63%). Those are John Wick numbers, people.
  • The games have followed a pattern. The focused, resilient Spurs hang around until halftime, and then are overwhelmed and crushed beneath the waves of Warriors power in the second half. I checked the box-scores, did some elementary math, and realized The Warriors are a +33 in the second half of the three games. San Antonio simply does not have the depth and firepower to keep up, no matter how beautiful their schemes may be.

We all know Spurs fans are mighty proud about their dynastic franchise. San Antonio is known as the NBA’s “model” organization, and have a major imprint on the Warriors through head coach Steve Kerr and the coaching staff. Fifteen minutes of browsing the Spurs blog @ Pounding the Rock can immediately show how engaged and fanatical the Spurs base can be.

With that in mind, I’m respectfully attempting to emphasize with them. I endeavor to put my size 13 feet in their silver-and-black shoes. What does it feel like? That moment when the Spurs have given their all at home after two quarters and still trail, knowing that the Warriors are a second half juggernaut? Pardon me while I close my eyes, press my fingers to my temples, and attempt to project what that fear must feel like into this article...

Quick Notes:

Gold-Blooded Prediction:

I’ve been roaring for a sweep since we started this series. Wait, you weren’t anticipating it with me? Oh, ye of little faith. Let’s get these tired Spurs off of the postseason floor ASAP; it’d be nice to get some rest before we meet those new-and-improved Pelicans in Round 2.

#activatetheswiffers

Warriors 111, Spurs 95.