With a 119-117 victory in Game 4 of the 2019 Western Conference Finals, the Golden State Warriors swept the Portland Trail Blazers en route to their fifth consecutive Finals appearance.
For so long, the Bill Russell-led Boston Celtics of the 1960s stood atop the NBA mountain as the only team ever to appear in five consecutive NBA Finals. With a 119-117 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers Monday night, the Golden State Warriors nudged their way into a seat at that prestigious table.
If there was any defense played in the first half by either team, it wasn’t successful. The two combined for 134 points over the first 24 minutes, along with 17 makes from beyond the arc. Portland shot a scorching 60.9 percent from the field while the Warriors weren’t too far behind at 56.8 percent.
The game wound up following a similar narrative to that of the two before it. Golden State fell down big, by as many as 17 midway through the third quarter. Rather than concede defeat with the knowledge of a near-guaranteed victory at Oracle Arena for Game 5, the Dubs slowly chipped away before NBA fans were treated to a second consecutive night of extra basketball.
In the overtime session, a 3-pointer by Draymond Green with under 40 seconds remaining put them up four. Damian Lillard had a chance at the win on a last-second shot from beyond the arc, but Klay Thompson‘s smothering defense forced the shot awry, sealing the victory for the Warriors.
Stephen Curry wrapped up his phenomenal play during these Western Conference Finals, finishing with a triple-double of 37 points along with 13 rebounds and 11 assists. It was his fourth consecutive game scoring 35-plus, joining only Jerry West and LeBron James to accomplish such a feat in the conference finals.
In dealing with a number of injuries, Steve Kerr went deep into his bench throughout the course of Game 4, playing all but one of his 12 players. He was rewarded with stellar outings from a number of role players that helped propel Golden State to a win.
Damian Lillard finished his 2019 playoff run with arguably his best game of the conference finals. He scored 28 points but also managed to dish out 12 assists with four rebounds. Myers Leonard was the true standout performer for Portland, finishing with a team and career-high 30 points on 12-of-16 shooting from the field.
The Warriors will now sit back and await the results of the Eastern Conference Finals matchup between the Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors. They’ll likely have at least a week off to reset both body and mind, a much-needed break for a team continuing its pursuit of history.