Golden State’s three dynamic guards – Steph Curry, Jordan Poole and Klay Thompson – combined for 78 points as the Warriors’ offense lit up the Grizzlies’ defense.
Curry scored 30 points, Thompson scored 21 while Poole – enjoying a stellar season – added 27 points off the bench.
In their 142-point performance, the Warriors shot 63.1% from the field — second-best in NBA playoff history.
“When we trust each other and just hit the open man, we have so many good shots that we’re capable of nights like this,” Thompson told the media.
The win means the Warriors take a 2-1 lead in their best-of-seven playoff series.
‘Broken the code’
For the Grizzlies, Ja Morant finished as the top scorer with 34 points, despite missing the final six minutes of the game after leaving with an apparent knee injury.
Morant – after a stunning 47-point performance in Game 2 – left the game after appearing to twist his right knee when Poole twisted it as he searched for a loose ball.
With 6:19 left in the fourth quarter, Morant could be seen limping towards the locker room. Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said he was undergoing further tests to assess the injury.
After the match, Morant tweeted a clip of the incident with the caption: “Broke the code”. The tweet was later deleted.
Brooks was subsequently ejected after receiving a flagrant-2 foul – described in NBA rules for contact deemed “unnecessary and excessive” – on Payton II and was suspended for Game 3.
Jenkins said Poole “grabbed his knee and pulled it”, but Poole denied intentionally hurting his opponent.
“I kicked the ball and I was going to get the ball. Obviously you don’t want to see anyone get hurt. I’m not even that type of player. I respect everyone,” he said.
“I hope he gets better and we can see him play in the next game. I don’t even play like that for real. It’s not my type of game.”
On the wire
The Milwaukee Bucks narrowly beat the Boston Celtics 103-101 in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference Semifinals series, largely thanks in part to a dominating performance from Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Rebounding from an atypically poor performance in Game 2 at Boston, Antetokounmpo scored 42 points, including making the field goal with 44.3 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
The Celtics had staged a fiery comeback to stage a thrilling Finals, but the two-time MVP regained control of the defending NBA champions.
But it was a nervy ending for the Bucks as Celtics forward Al Horford’s tip right at the buzzer was ruled just after the clock hit zero, meaning the Bucks have a 2-1 lead in their best of seven series.
“There are going to be struggles, but at the end of the day if you keep going and stick with it and stay the course, you’re going to be successful,” Antetokounmpo said. “If you don’t stay the course, you’re not going to be successful. It’s as simple as that.”
Jaylen Brown led the Celtics with 27 points and 12 rebounds while Horford added 22 points and 15 rebounds.
The teams will square off for Game 4 in Milwaukee on Monday night.
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