Sports

Warriors aim to sweep their way into NBA Finals

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Golden State Warriors will try to make quick work of the Houston Rockets as they look to complete a sweep and advance to the NBA Finals.

The Warriors can reach the championship round for the first time since 1975 with a victory Monday at the Toyota Center in Game 4 of the Western Conference finals.

League MVP Stephen Curry was masterful in the Warriors' 115-80 win on Saturday night. He nailed seven 3-pointers and scored 40 points.

"Remarkable, just a tremendous performance," Golden State coach Steve Kerr said.

The sharp-shooting Curry, who broke his 2013 record for the most 3-pointers made in a regular season with 286, has now drained the most treys in a single postseason. Reggie Miller set the mark in 2000, but Curry surpassed him in nine fewer games. It took Miller 22 contests to get to 59 3s.

"The shooting is hard to describe because I don't think we've ever seen anybody shoot the ball the way Steph does off the dribble, off the catch," Kerr said.

Curry's record-breaking 3 came at the 4:32 mark of the second. He took a few dribbles to his left and rose several feet from beyond the top of the arc to record his 60th trey of the postseason and give the Warriors a commanding 49-32 lead.

He finished the second with 15 points and added 19 more in the third, nailing all four of his 3-point tries.

Houston, which stormed back from a 19-point deficit and stunned the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 6 of their semifinal series, momentarily had its sights on another monumental comeback.

Curry, however, had other ideas.

Houston quickly trimmed a 25-point deficit to 18 with an 8-1 spurt to start the second half. The stoic Curry, though, knocked down a pair of triples and netted 10 points in a three-minute span to up the advantage back to 24 and the Rockets never threatened again.

Curry finished 12-of-19 from the field and 7-of-9 from beyond the arc. He has 64 3s in the playoffs.

Draymond Green had 17 points, 13 rebounds and five assists, Klay Thompson poured in 17 points and Andrew Bogut supplied 12 points and 12 boards for the top-seeded Warriors, who led by as many as 35.

James Harden, the runner-up to Curry in the MVP voting, poured in 17 points, but was just 3-of-16 from the floor for second-seeded Houston, which was held to 33.7 percent shooting.

Dwight Howard posted 14 points and 14 boards in defeat.

"We just can't quit on each other," Howard said. "We've come too far. We've been through too many battles to just allow it to end like tonight."

The Rockets showed plenty of fight in overcoming a 3-1 deficit to the Clippers in the second round and in the first two games of this series at Oracle Arena. Game 3 was a surprise to most, including Houston's head coach Kevin McHale.

"I was surprised we didn't come out with more juice," McHale said.

No team has ever come back from a 3-0 hole to win a best-of-seven series since the NBA switched to the current format.

If necessary, Game 5 would be Wednesday night in Oakland.