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Thompson, Green, Looney lead Warriors to NBA Finals

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- Klay Thompson, shaking off his shooting woes, scored 32 points while Kevon Looney added 18 rebounds and 11 points to lead Golden State to a 120-110 victory over Dallas Thursday night to advance to their sixth NBA Finals in eight years.

The Warriors will play the winner of the Boston-Miami NBA Eastern Conference Finals. The Celtics currently has a 3-2 lead heading into Friday's Game 6.

After missing the playoffs in 2020 and '21 in back-to back injury-plagued seasons, Golden State is returning to a familiar stage. They are the first team to make six finals appearances in an eight-year span since the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls had a pair of three-peats from 1991-93 and 1996-98.  

"It's so difficult to get to the Finals," said head coach Steve Kerr. "An NBA season is such a marathon, to get through the 82, to get through three rounds of the Playoffs, beating the best teams in the league to get there, it's frankly exhausting. It's stressful, emotional, physically tiring, all of that stuff."

"For our team, our guys, especially the core group, Dray and Steph, Klay, Loon, Andre, to be part of that six times in eight years, I don't even know what to say," he continued. "It just takes an enormous amount of skill and determination and work. I couldn't be prouder of our guys."

The Warriors are now 9-0 at the Chase Center this postseason, tying the 2017 team for the the most consecutive home wins in a single postseason in NBA history.  

Steph Curry, who had a subpar night, scoring just 15 points on 5-of-17 shooting, was awarded the NBA Western Conference Finals MVP for his play throughout the series.

"Again, all the pieces fit," Curry said. "Our personalities fit. So much trust in each other. But we are all just so competitive at the end of the day. That's carried us."

Thompson had struggled in the first half of the four previous games, scoring just a combined 18 points, but rediscovered his shooting touch from the opening tip. He hit 5-of-8 from three pointers to fueled Golden State's blitz to a 69-52 halftime lead.

He continued the onslaught in the second half, finishing the night 8-of-16 from the three-point line. 

"Just such a surreal feeling. It's hard to put into words really," Thompson told reporters. "This time last year, I was just starting to jog again and get up and down the court. Now to be feeling like myself, feeling explosive, feeling sure in my movements, I'm just grateful. All those emotions kind of rushed through me, and I thought about our training staff, I thought about Rick Celebrini, I thought about Steve, I thought about those days me and Rick were together in Santa Cruz and I was in a terrible mood. We were together in the summertime. All those long days."

"They would tell me it would pay off. It was hard to see that at the time. Now to actually be here, I can feel it paying off."

Meanwhile, Draymond Green hunted his shot and came away with 17 points, Andrew Wiggins added 18 and Jordan Poole scored 16, 12 of those coming in the first half.

"After being counted out, dynasty is over, all of those things," Green said. "To get back here, it's fantastic. It's a testament to the hard work and dedication and to an incredible organization. We continue to stick with it, show what we're capable of. This one feels great. But got four more wins to get."

As they have in the three previous wins, Golden State dominated the paint, outscoring the Mavs 50-32 on the inside and outrebounding them 56-38 with 17 second-chance points. 

The lead grew to 25 points in the second half, but the Mavericks refused to fold up, outscoring the Warriors 32-25 in the third quarter behind 15 points from Luka Doncic. The gifted Dallas guard ended the night with 28 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists.

Just as the home Chase Center crowd was  beginning to get edgy, Golden State scored the first 5 points of the fourth quarter and never looked back.

With Otto Porter  sidelined for a second straight game, the Warriors got a big boost in the first half from 19-year-old rookie Moses Moody.

Moody scored all of his seven points in the second quarter with his 3-pointer giving Golden State a 56-38 lead. Moody scored just six points the first three games of this series for the Warriors before scoring 17 the past two games with Porter sidelined.


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