Curry outduels Lawson as Warriors win
by Adi Joseph, USA TODAY Sports
Ty Lawson dominated until the final 90 seconds, the 90 seconds his Denver Nuggets needed him most.
Lawson missed two shots, then had a turnover on a key possession in a one-point game as the Golden State Warriors won 110-108 Game 3 Friday night in their home playoff opener. The Warriors used a potent two-point guard combination to counter the Nuggets’ hot leader and storm from a 12-point halftime deficit.
Lawson had 35 points and nine assists while making all 12 of his free throws. But it wasn’t enough, as 19 of those points came in the first half, when the game seemed in control for the Nuggets. He had more turnovers than field goals in the fourth quarter.
Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 29 points and 11 assists despite being uncertain he could play in the game. Jarrett Jack had 13 of his 23 points in the second half, including two free throws to give the Nuggets a four-point lead with 21 seconds left.
The Nuggets’ Wilson Chandler made a three-pointer to make it 109-108. That led to the confusing final set of plays. The Nuggets fouled Jarrett Jack along the sideline but let a lot of time run off for no reason, not realizing they weren’t in the bonus. The Warriors were to inbound with 9.4 seconds left but were called for a five-second violation and turnover.
The Nuggets inbounded to Lawson, who immediately aggressively attacked Warriors rookie center Festus Ezeli. But Ezeli played solid defense and forced Lawson to lose control, dribbling the ball out of bounds.
The Nuggets fouled Warriors rookie Harrison Barnes with about 3 seconds left, and he hit one of two free throws. Then Andre Iguodala took an inbound pass and nearly made a halfcourt three-pointer that would have won the game at the buzzer.… [For more on Stephen Curry outduels Ty Lawson as Warriors top Nuggets, click here.]