Dejounte Murray: Dejounte Murray will start at PG in Game 4

James Harden

All season long James Harden and the Rockets have done their best to challenge the conventional wisdom that, as good as they are, they are simply not in the same class of championship-caliber team as the Golden State Warriors and Spurs.

A pair of Game 3's were played last night as the Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs and Houston Rockets continued their series. "They've got great shooters, good athletes, good scheme, and just as anyone else would do we're just trying to do our best to get out to those shooters".

Then, Aldridge helped San Antonio tighten its grip on this Western Conference semifinals matchup by producing his most significant performance of the series against the Houston Rockets in the Spurs' 103-92 victory, sans future Hall of Fame point guard Tony Parker.

D'Antoni seemed to see the same thing. We did get after it ... but you know it becomes a slugfest. "And tonight I just tried to take my shots and be confident and even if they didn't fall I just stayed with it".

The Spurs led by six when Aldridge scored all of their points in a 7-2 run to make it 85-74 with about five minutes left. In a start against Cleveland on January 21, Murray scored 14 points on 7 of 11, notched six assists and grabbed two rebounds.

James Harden led the Rockets with 43 points after scoring just 13 in Game 2.

DeMar DeRozan scored 37 points and Jonas Valanciunas had 19 for the Raptors, who were without three-time All-Star Kyle Lowry. "I don't think players change much after one game. Offensively we just got to get guys involved, guys just got to have confidence and knock down these shots and be aggressive". Juxtapose this with the Spurs, and Kawhi Leonard. If their bench continues to outplay Houston's second unit and they keep up the energy on defense, they should be heading back to San Antonio after Game 4 up 3-1 with a chance to close out the series in Game 5.

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Although the Houston Rockets hung in there for quite some time, the bottom fell out down the stretch and our team started to wave the surrender flag.

The Cavaliers are the first team since the Minneapolis Lakers in 1949 and 1950 to win their first seven playoff games in consecutive seasons.

You want to credit Popovich, or blame D'Antoni? "Nothing they did should have bothered us". But they shoot about 45 percent, so you know how we - offense we just let ourselves down.

"We can't go back and re-play game three", Ariza said. He's good enough to make some, but the strategy turns him from killer facilitator into one-dimensional scorer (and makes the best use of guys like Aldridge and Gasol). But San Antonio had to actually hit shots if it was going to keep Houston at bay, so Pop rolled the dice.

Houston guard Patrick Beverley said Harden's ability to draw fouls is a skill that has been developed over time. "When he's been healthy we've had a rhythm, he gets into it defensively and has set a tone on the perimeter for us along with Kawhi (Leonard). That's hard for a lot of players to do".

I'll be damned if I see this team roll over and allow for San Antonio to come in and take this over.

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