Warriors to the final, Thompson scores 32 and Curry was MVP of the West

As time ticked down, Klay Thompson began to dance courtside. Later, in the celebration with his companions, he almost shed tears.

After two complicated surgeries and two years of arduous rehabilitation, Thompson has returned to form. And the Warriors are back in the NBA Finals.

Thompson scored 32 points and Golden State advanced to the NBA title series for the sixth time in the past eight seasons, beating the Dallas Mavericks 120-110 on Thursday.

“It’s hard to really put this into words,” Thompson said. “By this time last year I had just started jogging back and forth across the court. Now, feeling that I am myself, that I am explosive and that I am confident in my movements makes me feel grateful”.

Thompson tore the ACL in his right knee during Game 6 of the 2019 Finals, in which Toronto clinched the title with a win over the Warriors.

And just before the 2020-21 season began, he tore his right Achilles tendon. He was unable to play again until January.

The performance against the Mavs has shown the Thompson of yesteryear, the one who made up a stellar duo with Stephen Curry.

Thompson had 19 points in the first half, including a 3-pointer that he celebrated by shaking his shoulders, as Curry does.

The Warriors went into halftime with a 17-point lead and cruised through the rest of Game 5 of the Western Conference finals.

Andrew Wiggins had 18 points and 10 rebounds. Draymond Green had 17 points and Curry added 15 while dishing out nine assists for Golden State. He was voted the series’ Most Valuable Player and took home the first Magic Johnson Award.

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Luka Doncic started slow but ended up scoring 28 points for the Mavericks. Spencer Dinwiddie added 26.

After missing the playoffs in 2020 and 21, two years in which they became a hospital, the Warriors have returned to a scenario they were used to.

They join Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls in the 1990s, Magic Johnson’s Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s and Bill Russell’s Boston Celtics in the 1950s and ’60s as the only franchises to have made it to the Finals. at least six times in a period of eight years.

“I can’t tell you what it means for our team and our players, especially the ones that have been here a long time, to be a part of these six Finals in eight years,” coach Steve Kerr said. “It just takes a lot of talent, determination and work.”

 

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