Warriors fans rejoice after do-or-die win at Oracle

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The Houston Rockets, playing without injured All-Star point guard Chris Paul, waltzed into Golden State Saturday and punched the Warriors in the mouth to the tune of a 39-22 first-quarter lead in Game 6 of the Western Conference finals.

With Paul wearing warm-ups and watching from the bench, the Rockets roared out to a 17-point lead after the first quarter and led by 10 at halftime.

The Warriors outscored the Rockets 64-25 in the second half, limiting Harden to 10 points after the break.

The Warriors showed signs of life in the second quarter, putting together a 23-11 scoring run and trimming the deficit to five points.

Golden State typically performs well in third quarters and Houston never quite recovered. Oh, and the typically subdued Thompson let his emotions flow for all to see: He flexed his biceps Draymond Green style, pumped his arms like Kevin Durant and yelled out the way Stephen Curry often does at Oracle Arena.

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"I thought Klay was wonderful tonight, not just for 35 points and the nine threes, but his defense", Kerr said.

The Golden State Warriors dominated the rest of the way to stretch the series to the limit. You could even say that head coach Steve Kerr has a lot on the line in Game 6.

Their Eastern Conference final is also tied at 3 games apiece. Game 7 is Monday night in Houston. With Andre Iguodala sidelined the past two games with a left lateral leg contusion, Nick Young and Quinn Cook - two players Kerr would probably prefer not to play on such a big stage - have earned meaningful minutes.

"There's no pressure. It's an opportunity, an opportunity that we all are excited to be a part of", he said. I just think he wants to go out there and hoop, and he doesn't worry about much else.

Fast forward about two months, and McCaw is suiting up - in the biggest game of the season. I mean, we all thought we were going to win Game 6, right?

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"More than anything, I feel bad for Chris", Kerr said.

Which largely explains why the only two close games in this series both went to the Rockets.

"We're going to come out and we're going to be ready". But we can't count on it. Injuries happen, and you've just got to play with whoever's out there.

Saturday night's game takes place on the Warriors' home court, where they have only lost once in their last 17 playoff games. The Warriors have been lulled into mismatch attacking over the past two games of the series but they did it in a much more uptempo and free-flowing way in this game.

The defending champions trail Houston 3-2 in the best-of-seven series after consecutive wins by the Rockets, capped by Thursday night's 98-94 victory.

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