NBA Finals Game 3 Running Diary

I hope you all read my game two running diary, but if you missed it, click here and give it a read to see what this running diary is all about and how it works. Nothing else to say so let’s get right into it.

  • 8:50 – Just announced that Klay Thompson will not be playing tonight. Too bad. Klay is one of the all time tough guys in NBA history, playing through a bleeding ear and a horrible ankle sprain in last year’s playoffs, yet making so little noise about that it actually hurt his legacy as a tough guy. Reports said that the Golden State trainers and coaches had been begging Klay all day to sit out as he continually refused before they finally overruled him. Man, I love Klay.
  • 8:53 – With Klay out, I’ll say my early prediction is like a 112-102 Toronto win. The injuries are piling up to an incredulous amount that even Curry and Draymond might not be able to overcome. If they do, it’s a testament to their greatness and virtually seals the series for them. If the Raptors can’t win against a depleted lineup tonight, I can’t take them seriously again.
  • 8:56 – The good news with Klay sitting out is that we should see some more box-and-one defense from the Raptors. Only way it could get better is if Nick Nurse really wanted to disrespect the Dubs and do a triangle-and-two with both guys on Steph.
  • 8:56 – I didn’t think they would sing “O Canada” at Oracle. I thought it would only be a thing in Toronto. Learn something new every day.
  • 9:12 – And we still haven’t tipped off. Don’t tell me the game starts at nine if you’re just going to give me bad pregame analysis for 12 minutes ESPN.
  • 9:13 – Steph. Livingston. Draymond. Andre. Cousins. Amazing that it’s come to this.
  • 9:15 – Steph would never shoot that mid range pull up. Maybe Kerr told him he has to shoot 40 times tonight.
  • 9:16 – Yeah Curry is definitely shooting a lot tonight.
  • 9:18 – I think the Warriors know how slim their chances of winning are tonight. A lot of early threes.
  • 9:21 – I think I agree with Klay. The trainers should have let him play unless his hamstring was actually torn out of his leg. The Warriors out there right now look dreadful.
  • 9:26 – Steph is underrated and always has been.
  • 9:29 – Sounds like there’s a lot of Raptors’ fans present. No small feat in Oracle.
  • 9:30 – I think I actually saw foam coming out of Lowry’s mouth when he saw he had Quinn Cook trying to guard him.
  • 9:33 – Alfonzo McKinnie has officially qualified for the Danny Green “No Dribbling” rule.
  • 9:38 – As the president of Norman Powell Island, I am very offended that Nick Nurse has given his minutes to Pat McCaw.
  • 9:39 – If I’m the Warriors I’m not running set plays. Everything should be a Steph isolation or transition offense.
  • 9:41 – Hot Take: Jordan Bell has officially passed Tyreke Evans for biggest drop off from his rookie to sophomore year.
  • 9:43 – The Raptors shouldn’t overreact to the Warriors catching up a bit at the end of the first. Run pick and rolls from the top of the key with Danny Green spacing in the corner and you’ll get a good shot every time. On defense, I think it might actually be time for a triangle-and-two on Steph. There is no reason to guard anyone else outside of the paint.
  • 9:52 – When Siakam can’t be stopped in isos and post ups, the Raptors look unbeatable. Great start for him so far.
  • 9:55 – Steph’s been sitting out for the last three minutes. That’s two minutes too many for what they need tonight.
  • 10:00 – Horrible missed goaltending on Ibaka, and even more horrible for the Dubs considering they need everything they can get tonight.
  • 10:01 – This feels like a game in January, not in June.
  • 10:08 – Definitely the worst game of this series so far. The Warriors can literally do nothing right now and the Raptors should be up 20, but Lowry and Kawhi have played like absolute crap. Just bad basketball.
  • 10:11 – That Bogut v Gasol slap fight was pretty funny for those who noticed.
  • 10:16 – Another horrible call. Lowry checks Quinn cook like a hockey player, Cook get the foul, and that play negates a deep Steph three. Just awful.
  • 10:18 – Do the Raptors know how to take pull up jumpers? Feels like they’ve committed at least five charges in this half.
  • 10:19 – Feels like the Warriors just won that half even though they’re down eight. If Klay and KD were healthy, they’d probably be up 20.
  • 10:20 – I think there’s only two possible outcomes for this game. Most likely the Raptors win in a 20 point blowout. But if they don’t start playing soon, this has all the signs of a miraculous robbery by Golden State and Curry.
  • 10:33 – My bet is that the Warriors start Bogut for the second half. They need his defense, because it’s clear that no matter who they put in there will be no offense outside of Steph.
  • 10:34 – I appreciate both teams wearing the proper home and away colors for each game so far. Easy on the eyes.
  • 10:36 – Imagine if Toronto had won game two. I bet they would have swept the series.
  • 10:40 – Horrible Boogie miss leads to a Kawhi three. I can feel Kerr’s pain from here.
  • 10:44 – I can’t believe we haven’t seen any of the box and one for Toronto. Feels like it would be perfect for this game. Nick Nurse is disappointing us basketball nerds on an astronomical level.
  • 10:46 – Looney’s absence can’t be overlooked tonight. The performance of the other Warriors’ centers alone should earn him at least eight million a year on his next contract.
  • 10:50 – That Kawhi three where he immediately back pivoted on the catch and shot was beautiful. Reminds me of what I tried to do on my threes to get them off quickly over taller players.
  • 10:55 – A Bogut lefty hook!!! That’s some 2016 type of stuff right there!
  • 10:56 – Correction. We’re actually in 2013 and Danny Green is nailing three pointers in the Finals left and right.
  • 11:00 – So is Finals Danny Green now a thing?
  • 11:02 – Make that two 36 point quarters for the Raptors tonight. Klay’s absence not only kills their offensive spacing, but now they have to put either Iggy or Draymond on Kawhi and lose some of their amazing help defense.
  • 11:07 – I had completely forgot that Ibaka was even playing tonight until he got that pass in the corner and refused to shoot even though he was open by a mile.
  • 11:09 – That’s at least the tenth time the Warriors have cut the lead to seven tonight.
  • 11:10 – Looney with a fractured collarbone would still be better than Jordan Bell.
  • 11:18 – A lot of what he does annoys me, but Lowry’s pick and roll bounce passes are pristine and perfect 95% of the time.
  • 11:20 – The speculation around Klay and KD’s availability heading into game four is going to reach a new level of discussion in media. One of them plays, and the Dubs probably even things up. Neither dresses, and the Raptors secure their first title in franchise history.
  • 11:24 – I’m surprised Steph and Draymond are still in the game with five minutes left.
  • 11:27 – Jeff Van Gundy just stole the nickname “Iblocka”, which I thought of at least three years ago. Should have gotten a copyright.
  • 11:31 – Calling Bogut’s missed tip a goaltend is the third noticeable bad call against the Warriors tonight.
  • 11:33 – I’m not a fan of generic, unsubstantiated takes, but I am very impressed at the lack of quit in the depleted Warriors tonight. A normal team would have lost by 35.
  • 11:35 – How hurt is Kawhi? The Raptors are calling all of their end of game on ball actions for Lowry. Strange.
  • 11:36 – Fred VanVleet–the master of rainbow arc threes.
  • 11:38 – Kerr concedes after the VanVleet shot. Smart move. Weird that the Nurse has left his starters in though.
  • 11:39 – The fact that games three and four are the only stretch of the Finals that isn’t spaced by three days seems incredibly important and fortunate for the Raptors now.
  • 11:43 – Wait a second, Kawhi had 30 points? Since when???? He’s officially the master of quiet 30 point performances and that means something.

Conclusion:

Not much to say here. If the Warriors get Klay and KD back for the rest of the series, I think they win in seven. If not, the Raptors will win game four and steal a title from what should be the greatest dynasty of the modern era.