NBA MVP Stephen Curry and first-year Warriors coach Steve Kerr hope to power through the Houston Rockets and head to the NBA Finals.
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The Houston Rockets face the Golden State Warriors in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals.
The Warriors have faced little resistance on their path through the NBA Playoffs, sweeping the New Orleans Pelicans in four games and dispatching the Memphis Grizzlies in six games after falling behind 2-1 in the series.
The Rockets had it easy in the first round of the playoffs, beating the Dallas Mavericks in five games but then falling behind 3-1 to the Los Angeles Clippers in the Conference Semifinals before winning the last three games and making it to the Conference Finals.
While the Warriors haven’t lost a game by more than 10 points since an April loss to the San Antonio Spurs, the Rockets have at times looked lost on the court and lost their three games to the Clippers by 15 points or more each time. Warriors G Stephen Curry is the most dominant player remaining in the NBA Conference Finals while Rockets star G James Harden struggled at times during the Semifinals against the Clippers. Unlike the Clippers, the Warriors will have the upper hand in this series with more early home games, more depth on the bench and better free throw shooting.
Prediction: Golden State Warriors win Game 1 – Look for the Warriors to establish the temp early in the game, give some breathing room for the Rockets in the second and third periods and then overpower them with shot after shot in the fourth to take the 1st game at home.