The Golden State Warriors have returned to their 6th NBA Finals in the last 8 years. This comes after a 120-110 victory over the Dallas Mavericks, eliminating Dallas in five games. This is the Warriors first trip back to the NBA Finals since their 2018-19 season, which saw detrimental injuries to both Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.
The man who had been dubbed “Game 6 Klay” just so happened to emerge a game early. In Game 5, Thompson finished with a dazzling 32 points, while also dishing three assists and grabbing two rebounds.
“I don’t need another nickname,” Thompson stated postgame. “I’ve learned in this league, you don’t want to self proclaim anything. You want to earn those nicknames, so I’ll let you guys write about that”.
Thompson was sidelined for the entirety of the 2019-20 NBA season after he suffered a torn ACL on his left knee during the 2019 NBA Finals. He subsequently suffered a ruptured right achilles in practice, as he was nearing a return. This then sidelined him for his second consecutive year (2020-21 NBA season).
Luka Doncic started the game off slow himself, with only 6 points in the first half, but went on to finish with 28 points after a big third quarter. Spencer Dinwiddie provided a much needed 26 points off the bench.
The fatigued Mavericks were picked apart defensively in this game, as has been the case throughout the majority of this series. Dallas found themselves with a 17-point deficit at half, which they would eventually cut to 9. Dallas couldn’t compile stops and instead traded buckets down the stretch.
Steph Curry finished the game with 15 points and nine assists. He averaged 23.8 points and 7.4 assists in this series.
Curry became the inaugural recipient of the Magic Johnson Western Conference finals MVP trophy.
Out East, the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat are heading into a Game 7 with the Warriors waiting on the winner. Meanwhile, the Mavericks now shift their focus to the offseason, which predictably will be productive as the Mavs are in ‘win now’ mode.