Houston Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors - 5/16/18 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Houston Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors - 5/16/18 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

They invited the Golden State Warriors in, dared to beat the reigning National Basketball Association champions at their own game in these Western Conference finals with an emphatic win and came up woefully short of that goal in the opener.

The defending champions snatched home-court advantage with a frenetic 119-106 win at Toyota Center on Tuesday (NZT). "This is why anyone would want him on their team..."

"I thought Nick's minutes were important for us", Kerr said.

Every NBA fan knew that the Western Conference Finals series between the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets was always going to be an emotional affair, and Game 1 on Monday night didn't disappoint.

"We want to keep the ball moving", Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.

"I think he's going to get even better as the series goes on, which is good for us", Kerr said of Curry.

"We can do a little better job against them mentally", D'Antoni said.

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The Houston Rockets know the feeling now, after living through it on what could turn out to be the biggest night of the best (regular) season in the history of the franchise. "We've got this far doing that and having that mindset, so we're just going to continue with it". "Every time we made a mistake, they made us pay". Due to his ball dominant ways, Paul only accounted for three more assists. After becoming part of the team's unassuming All-Star through two National Basketball Association title runs in three years, Warriors guard Klay Thompson had 28 points while going 9-of-18 from the field and 6-of-15 from the 3-point range. Thompson drilled the Rockets for 28 points of his own, his 15 attempts from beyond the 3-point line serving as a more demoralizing dagger for a Rockets defense created to limit those attempts.

Houston ended a scoring drought of more than two minutes with a dunk by Harden seconds later and the Warriors followed with another run, scoring six straight points to extend it to 85-72 with just more than two minutes left in the third.

Those are the other four members of the Warriors' "Hamptons Five" lineup that started the game, the group that withstood everything the Rockets threw at them Monday and then beat them up over the final 15 minutes of a must-have game on their home floor.

"Houston, they never stop", Durant said. "We've got to make them rotate and take tougher shots".

Draymond Green on getting the technical so early: "I was a bit overzealous, a bit amped up, but I'd rather that any day than coming out flat".

Ariza 3-8 1-1 8, Tucker 0-3 1-3 1, Capela 6-7 0-0 12, Paul 8-17 5-7 23, Harden 14-24 8-10 41, Mbah a Moute 0-6 0-0 0, Anderson 0-1 0-0 0, Nene 0-1 0-0 0, G.Green 2-5 0-0 6, Gordon 6-13 0-0 15.

Durant was huge when Stephen Curry was out with a sprained MCL - an injury that kept him out until Game 2 of the second round - and Klay Thompson has been hot-and-cold all postseason, but the Warriors were never truly in danger until they lost Game 3 to the Pelicans.