Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Klay Thompson tallied 22 points and seven rebounds and despite horrid foul shooting down the stretch from both teams, the Golden State Warriors stole home-court advantage from the Los Angeles Clippers with a 109-105 win in Game 1 of the Western Conference quarterfinal series from Staples Center.
The sixth-seeded Warriors led for the majority of the second half, but two timely Chris Paul 3-pointers pulled the host Clippers back. His second trey in a 72-second window late in the fourth tied the score at 102-102.
It was knotted at 105-105 when Golden State's Draymond Green worked his way to the free throw line with 24 seconds left and made both. The Clippers used their final timeout and put the ball in their All-Star Paul's hands, but a hard double team forced Paul to lose it out-of-bounds.
After initially ruling Clippers' ball, officials went to the monitors and quickly overturned the call, handing it back to Golden State.
Harrison Barnes then made 1-of-2 from the stripe, leaving the door open for Los Angeles, but Paul was intentionally fouled and the 86 percent career foul shooter missed both. Green could have put the game away, but he too missed two free throws with 6.8 seconds to play. On the second miss, the Clippers' Darren Collison chased down the rebound and stepped out of bounds.
Thompson then took his turn at the stripe and made 1-of-2, sealing the outcome.
"I am proud of my guys," said Warriors head coach Mark Jackson. "We're not going to quit. We had a tremendous will. This series is far from over."
The loss broke LA's three-game home winning streak against the Warriors, who were returning to the postseason after missing out last season.
David Lee had 20 points and 13 rebounds and Barnes scored 14 with eight boards off the bench for Golden State, while leading scorer Stephen Curry was limited to 14 points with seven assists and seven turnovers.
Paul flirted with a triple-double for Los Angeles, depositing 28 points with eight assists and seven rebounds in the disappointing setback. J.J. Redick added a playoff career-high 22 points and DeAndre Jordan grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds.
"We didn't play very well," said Clippers head coach Doc Rivers. "We were in foul trouble most of the game. We played hard but a lot of times I think we lost our trust."
After the two teams played to a 52-52 draw in the first half, the tempo picked up early in the third quarter as both of these offensive juggernauts came alive. The Warriors opened 9-for-10 shooting with Thompson supplying a pair of threes, but Redick and the Clippers were right there with them. Redick scored 10 points during a back-and-forth flurry that included a Paul triple and 12 Golden State points before LA finally calmed things down with a timeout with the score tied at 73-73 with 5:10 left in the period.
The Warriors created some separation late in the frame with an 8-0 run. Lee made four free throws around a Thompson finger roll, and Jermaine O'Neal's layup with 0.8 seconds left resulted in an 87-79 advantage.
The 35-year-old O'Neal scored 13 points filling in for the injured Andrew Bogut, who is out indefinitely with a fractured rib.
O'Neal had two dunks to start the fourth and Lee tipped in a Thompson miss to help the Warriors stretch their lead to 93-82.
Blake Griffin's short hook over Green capped a 6-0 Clippers' surge that later cut the margin to four, but Lee absorbed contact and hit a layup at the other end to make it 100-94 with under four minutes left.
Griffin logged just 19 minutes before fouling out. He scored 16 points.
"I kept putting myself in a bad situation by fouling," Griffin said. "I have to do a better job. I have to play smarter. I think some of us, including myself, wanted it too much. We have to relax."
Barnes had one of the biggest sequences of his young career with just under two minutes remaining, blocking Paul's layup at one end and canning an uncontested triple at the other after Collison had given Los Angeles a brief 103-102 lead with a free throw.
Golden State struggled out of the gate, missing its first eight shots from the floor and falling behind 12-1 before Curry finally ignited with offense with a step-back jumper 4:22 in. The Warriors used a 16-5 run to tie the score at 17-17.
Jamal Crawford banked in a half-court heave to beat the buzzer for a 29-24 LA lead after the first quarter.
Griffin picked up his third foul -- a charge drawn by Marreese Speights -- just 39 seconds into the second quarter and was immediately replaced. Thompson's three from the left corner five minutes later gave Golden State its first lead at 34-31.
Curry caught fire late in the half, hitting a circus layup and deep pull-up 3- pointer to put the Warriors back in front. Los Angeles held a two-point margin as the clock neared zero when Barnes grabbed a contested offensive rebound and drew a foul, then hitting two free throws with 0.2 seconds left to tie it heading into intermission.
This was the first postseason meeting between the two teams ... There were 18 ties and 15 lead changes ... Golden State's Andre Iguodala battled foul trouble all throughout the contest and fouled out in the fourth after just 20:15 on the floor. He did not foul out once during the regular season ... Jordan finished with five blocks, one shy of Gar Heard's franchise record for in a playoff game. Heard had six on April 12, 1974 against Boston ... The Clippers were 17-3 during the regular season when Redick scored 15-plus points.