Sports | June 3, 2019 9:00 am

Warriors Use Searing 6-Minute Stretch to Even NBA Finals

Toronto fell 109-104 to Golden State in Game 2 of the Finals

Kawhi Leonard defended by DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Iguodala. (Vaughn Ridley/Getty)
Kawhi Leonard defended by DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Iguodala. (Vaughn Ridley/Getty)
Getty Images

Leading the Warriors by five points to start the third quarter, the Raptors were in good position to extend their lead in Game 2 of the NBA Finals and extend their lead in the series to 2-0.

Then, Golden State did Golden State things and the lead, as well as Toronto’s shot at winning the game, were gone. Not in an instant, but in six minutes.

Over the first 360 seconds of the third quarter, the Warriors went on an 18-0 run and turned a five-point deficit into a 72-59 lead they would not relinquish.

The Raptors were held scoreless by stifling defense during their first 12 possessions of the second half and the Warriors were able to use ball movement and pinpoint 3-point shooting on the other end of the floor to make them pay.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that six-minute stretch included the biggest run of consecutive points to open a half in NBA Finals history.

“We had four or five decent possessions there and we just came away empty on all of them,” said Toronto coach Nick Nurse. “And then we had probably four or five that were not good possessions, either. So certainly, the offense hurt the chance to get the defense set up there. I’m going to have to re-watch that. Probably not going to enjoy that very much, but I’m going to have to check it out.”

Despite the back-breaking run to start the third, Toronto battled back in the fourth and had the margin down to just two points with only a few seconds to play. Then Andre Iguodala, a former Finals MVP, drained a 3-pointer and the series was even at series 1-1.

Game 3 is Wednesday night in Oakland. Klay Thompson injured his hamstring early in the fourth quarter Sunday night and didn’t return to the game so he is questionable to play. Kevin Durant (calf) could also continue to sit out.

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