Game 2 Preview: Warriors vs. Trail Blazers – 4/19/17

LET’S PLAY TWO
After Golden State prevailed in Game 1 on Sunday, the Warriors and Trail Blazers will meet again for Game 2 on Wednesday night. This will be the last game at Oracle Arena before the series transitions to Portland for Games 3 and 4. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Watch the action on NBC Sports Bay Area and TNT, or listen to the call on 95.7 The Game on the Warriors Radio Network.

LAST TIME OUT
The Warriors broke open a tight game with a 15-2 run to open the fourth quarter and beat the Trail Blazers 121-109 in Game 1 on Sunday at Oracle Arena.Full Recap

MATCHUP AT A GLANCE
Playoff Ranks

GSW
1-0
1st in West
121.0 PPG (1st)
45.0 RPG (5th)
26.0 APG (T-3rd)

POR

0-1
8th in West
109.0 PPG (T-5th)
38.0 RPG (12th)
15.0 APG (T-15th)

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PROJECTED STARTERS

GSW: Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Zaza Pachulia

POR: Damian Lillard, C.J. McCollum, Evan Turner, Maurice Harkless and Noah Vonleh

INJURY & ROSTER NOTES

GSW: TBD. Team Notes

POR: Allen Crabbe (left foot) is probable. Jusuf Nurkic (right leg) and Tim Quarterman (concussion) are questionable. Ed Davis (left shoulder) and Festus Ezeli (left knee) are out. Team Notes

SUPPORTING CAST
C.J. McCollum and Damian Lillard combined for the second-most points ever scored by Blazers teammates in a postseason game, but it still wasn’t enough to come away with the victory on Sunday. McCollum, who was simply scintillating in the second quarter on his way to a game-high 41 points, and Lillard formed the highest-scoring backcourt duo in the Western Conference this season, and poured in a combined 75 points on 51.9 percent shooting from the field in Game 1. Unfortunately for them, however, the rest of their teammates made just 12 of their 39 shot attempts (.308) and totaled only 34 points in the defeat. Whether the Warriors ratcheted up the defense or McCollum and Lillard got fatigued down the stretch, the explanation for why Golden State ran away with the game in the final quarter isn’t as important as the reality that Portland faces. They will simply need other players to help carry some of the scoring burden, so that the guards don’t expend all their energy to keep the Blazers afloat. That thought was not lost on Portland head coach Terry Stotts, who after the game said, “If they [Lillard and McCollum] get 80 between them, we still need to score another 40 or 50 somewhere.”

TEAM PLAYOFF LEADERS

GSW
PTS: Durant (32.0)
REB: Greent (12.0)
AST: Green (9.0)

POR

PTS: McCollum (41.0)
REB: Turner (10.0)
AST: Turner (4.0)

DRAYMOND’S DEFENSE
Of course, it’s not as if the Trail Blazers were just missing open looks. The Warriors had stretches of great defensive play throughout the game, and Draymond Green was at the center of most of them. Green had arguably the best game of anyone on Sunday, and became the first player in Warriors history to be the team’s outright leader in rebounds, assists, steals and blocks in a playoff game. The Trail Blazers shot just 5-of-21 (.238) in the game when Green was the primary defender, easily the most shots defended and best defensive field goal percentage of anyone who played in the contest. While his superb defense was a constant, he also had a couple game-defining blocks of Noah Vonleh and Damian Lillard, which seemed to shift the momentum in Golden State’s favor. If Green can continue to have such a drastic impact on the defensive end in the series, it bodes very well for the Warriors’ chances of advancing.

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