How much better will Warriors be in Game 3 as they seek redemption vs Rockets?


OAKLAND -- Klay Thompson says the ball movement will improve. Draymond Green says the defense will be better. Steve Kerr says the Warriors will be sharper.

Those are the goals Sunday afternoon, when the defending champions face the Houston Rockets in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals. Tipoff at Oracle Arena is scheduled for 5 p.m. Pacific.

The Warriors are coming off a disappointing performance in Game 2 that resulted in a 22-point defeat that allowed the Rockets to tie the best-of-seven series at 1-1.

Houston coach Mike D’Antoni and Kerr have spent the past three days talking up the need for defense and effort -- or “force” -- saying those factors will dictate the outcome. The Warriors had the edge in Game 1, but the Rockets had it in Game 2.


Warriors by 8


Klay Thompson vs. James Harden: Thompson expects to get the bulk of the minutes against Harden, who through the first two games sought to manipulate the defense in search of a favorable matchup, usually targeting Stephen Curry. The Warriors say they’ve made a few tweaks to their defense, stressing the need to stay in front of the ball-handler. Thompson, when engaged, is good at this. He says he’s eager to “redeem” himself after the Game 2 loss.


Warriors: G Pat McCaw (lumbar spine contusion) is listed as out.

Rockets: No injuries reported.


Marc Davis (crew chief), Sean Corbin, Jason Phillips, Bill Spooner (alternate)


Game 1: Warriors 119, Rockets 106 at Houston Game 2: Rockets 127, Warriors 105 at Houston


Warriors: Defeated San Antonio in five games in the first round, defeated New Orleans in five games in the conference semifinals.

Rockets: Defeated Minnesota in five games in the first round, defeated Utah in five games in the conference semifinals.


The teams met three times in the regular season, with Houston posting a 122-121 win on Oct. 17 at Oakland, the Warriors taking a 124-114 victory on Jan. 4 at Houston and the Rockets prevailing 116-108 on Jan. 20 in Houston. The Warriors have won 12 of the last 15 meetings in the regular season.


WARRIORS D: The Warriors were completely out of sorts on defense in Game 2, paving a path through which Eric Gordon, PJ Tucker and Trevor Ariza combined to score 68 points. After three days reviewing the video and taking corrective steps, the Warriors should be appreciably better.

STEPH TOWN: Stephen Curry’s 3-ball has been stubborn about going in. Despite going 2-of-13 over the first two games, he says he’s fine. This much we know: Curry’s shooting numbers historically are better at home, where the crowd hangs on his every shot. He’ll fire early and maybe often, looking for his rhythm.

CP3 PLAYING HURT: After playing less than four minutes of the fourth quarter in Game 2, Chris Paul limped off the court with an ice bag strapped to his lower left leg. Whether it’s a calf, an Achilles, an ankle or a foot, the Rockets aren’t saying. Expect the Warriors to test Paul early to get a feel for his mobility.

Game Result/Schedule
Game 1 Warriors 119, Rockets 106
Game 2 Rockets 127, Warriors 105
Game 3 Oakland -- Sunday, May 20th at 5 p.m.
Game 4 Oakland -- Tuesday, May 22nd at 6 p.m.
Game 5 Houston -- Thursday, May 24th at 6 p.m.
Game 6 Oakland -- Saturday, May 26th at 6 p.m. (if necessary)
Game 7 Houston -- Monday, May 28th at 6 p.m. (if necessary)
Contact Us