By TERESA M. WALKER, AP Sports activities Author
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Stephen Curry had a message for Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. after the Golden State Warriors took Sport 1 of their Western Convention semifinal towards the Memphis Grizzlies.
Put together to have some enjoyable on this collection.
Morant countered in an enormous method in Sport 2. He additionally made positive to get in Curry’s ear after tying the best-of-seven playoff at one apiece.
“I used to be capable of return that message … saying the identical factor,” Morant stated after equaling his postseason excessive with 47 factors in Memphis’ 106-101 win Tuesday night time. “I all the time say, that is my favourite matchup taking part in towards a man like him, an ideal expertise. Yeah, it’s going to be a battle.”
Curry and Morant have been dueling going again to final yr’s play-in sport. Morant and Memphis gained on Curry’s house courtroom to clinch the eighth seed. Beginning with that sport, solely one among seven conferences have been determined by double digits.
And the two-time NBA scoring champion did not play in that 123-95 rout by Memphis on March 28 to take the season collection 3-1.
On this semifinal, Morant has outscored Curry in every sport. The NBA’s Most Improved Participant missed a layup on the finish of Sport 1 in a 117-116 loss that ate at Morant till he received again on the courtroom Tuesday night time.
Morant scored 14 factors within the first quarter. However he was at his best possible within the fourth regardless of taking a shot to his left eye going for a rebound late within the third interval — it even took him a couple of minutes to see properly sufficient to get again on the ground.
The Grizzlies trailed 89-86 when Morant received began. He transformed a three-point play after being fouled by Draymond Inexperienced to tie it with 6:11 left. Brandon Clarke added two free throws after which Morant took over, scoring the final 15 factors for the Grizzlies over the ultimate 4:16.
The dynamic guard shot 6 of 11 within the fourth, together with 1 of three outdoors the arc. He additionally made all 5 free throws, scoring 18 of Memphis’ 29 factors. Morant was the one Grizzlies starter on the ground throughout a private 15-6 run he reeled off whereas surrounded by reserves, with Jackson fouled out, Dillon Brooks ejected and Desmond Bane coping with a sore again.
Xavier Tillman Sr. had one thought of how his teammate completed the sport.
“Mama there goes that man,” Tillman stated. “He’s a bucket. Yeah, he’s a bucket for positive. Particularly within the clutch time, like he is aware of the way to get to the place he desires to be. As a defender, I don’t know what they suppose of their head, however it’s onerous to cease him for positive.”
The Warriors misplaced Gary Payton II to a damaged left elbow early within the sport. He began to assist defend Morant, and Inexperienced stated they only have to “guard him higher.”
Golden State additionally must shoot higher. The Warriors have been 7 of 38 from 3-point vary, with Curry and Klay Thompson combining to go 5 for 23. Curry stated they will be prepared for the subsequent spherical of this prize battle after feeling they let one slip away. Sport 3 is Saturday night time in San Francisco.
“It’s going to be a protracted three days with that feeling, however we perceive what we have to do and the way we have to play and the issues we have to concentrate on, and decide to that come Saturday,” Curry stated.
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