Fantasy Impact Aldridge was the center of the offense for the Spurs on Thursday with Leonard out and he was up to the challenge helping lead the Spurs past the Rockets onto the Western Conference Finals versus the Warriors. It was Aldridge's best offensive game since May 2, 2016 when he scored 41 points in a playoff win against the Oklahoma City Thunder. "This team has worked hard all year and we've grinded and tried to get better, so I'm happy to finally win (the series)". He responded by pouring in 34 points on 16-26 shooting, and added 12 rebounds. With Leonard side-lined, the bulk of the scoring load fell on LaMarcus Aldridge, who was presented with mismatches all night. "I was trying to be more dominant down there". Ah well. I'll see you in the Finals. San Antonio beat Golden State two times (out of three games) during the regular National Basketball Association season, but they are now up against a very healthy and well-rested team in the Warriors.
Durant only played in the season opener against the Spurs, but dropped 27 points on 11-of-18 shooting while grabbing 10 rebounds and dishing four assists.
A somber Harden was clear about who was to blame for the loss.
"Everything falls on my shoulders", said Harden. Though this series could have been very interesting past year, Kevin Durant brings so much to the table in this series on both ends of the floor that it is hard to go against the Warriors in this one. "But it happened. Now we move forward".
"It could, "he said. No matter what it was, we just didn't have it tonight". Pau Gasol paired 10 points with 11 boards for San Antonio, which trailed 5-4 in the first quarter before rolling to victory.
Harden was a non-factor Thursday after finishing second in scoring during the season at 29.1 points per game. He made that 3-pointer to whittle the lead a bit, but it didn't get the Rockets going. The Spurs have elite perimeter defenders in Kawhi Leonard, Jonathon Simmons and Danny Green, but will they be able to slow down the Warriors' arsenal of superstars? The Warriors, who struggled to score in the first half, shot 58 percent after Leonard left.
Rockets: Ariza received a technical in the third for the scuffle with Ariza.
Mike D'Antoni is a realist. Dekker had six points.
In fact, they were barely going to give themselves two hours to bask in their 114-75 win over the Houston Rockets in Game 6 before looking ahead. Green has thrived in the playoffs, making 21 of 41 3s while averaging 14.9 points, 9.1 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 2.6 blocks and 2.0 steals.
But with time to prepare a new game plan without Leonard, the Warriors are expecting a different type of challenge in Game 2.