Heading into game 4 many sports personalities, NBA commentators, and sports fans had the Golden State Warriors winning this game at home. This consensus appeared to be the case as the Warriors had a fabulous start putting the Rockets in a 12-0 deficit early in the game. Despite the sluggish start, it was clear that Houston came to play with James Harden and Eric Gordon leading their team to a halftime lead. Both players were not particularly efficient, but did go at the teeth of the defense by driving and not settling for long, contested jumpers. Furthermore, the Warriors lost Andre Igudola in the first quarter due to a knee injury.
This helped the Rockets amass a slid 7-point lead at halftime. Yet despite this, in typical GSW fashion, the floodgates opened in the third quarter. In the 3rd, Golden State outscored Houston 34 to 17. Steph Curry was able to get going, scoring 17 points, making 5 of his 8 three-pointers.
Despite facing a 10-point deficit, the Rockets simply played an exceptional fourth quarter. In particular, PG Chris Paul was sensational scoring the basket and assisting his teammates for open 3-point shots. After being down most of the second half, Houston was able to gain the lead with about a minute remaining.
After a free-throw from Paul, the Rockets’ lead grew to five and despite having one more last second shot from Curry, GSW failed to send the game to overtime.
Overall it was a great game for the Rockets. Not only did James Harden and Chris Paul combine for 57 points, but many of the team’s role players stepped up in crucial moments. Furthermore, by stealing a game on the road the Rockets were now able to retake home-court advantage.
It is now up to Golden State to win on the road, and with an injury to Iguodala, Steve Kerr will need to find a way to maximize his lineup with the other players he has on the bench. One thing is for certain- Houston is now in the driver’s seat and has a great chance at dethroning the reigning NBA champions.