With the Golden State Warriors missing two of their three All-Stars in Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson for Game 3, everybody looked to Stephen Curry to deliver.
The two-time league MVP answered the call, exploding for a Finals career-high 47 points, while recording a near triple-double with eight rebounds and seven assists in 43 minutes of game time.
His 47-point game took him to eighth on the top 10 single-game scoring performances in NBA Finals history and put him alongside some Hall of Fame company.
With 47 PTS tonight, Stephen Curry becomes the ninth player in @NBAHistory to score 45+ PTS in a #NBAFinals game, joining- NBA.com/Stats (@nbastats) June 6, 2019
Elgin Baylor, Rick Barry, LeBron James, Michael Jordan (3x), Jerry West (3x) Bob Pettit, Allen Iverson, and Wilt Chamberlain. pic.twitter.com/BRC9zas07A
"Steph was incredible," Warriors head coach Steve Kerr in the post-game press conference.
"The stuff he does is, he does things that honestly I don't think anybody has ever done before. The way he plays the game, the way he shoots it and the combination of his ball handling and shooting skills, it's incredible to watch. He was amazing."
Curry showed early signs of a big night, scoring or assisting on 24 of the team's 29 first-quarter points.
His 17 points in the first period tied his playoff-career mark from 2014, in the first round against the Los Angeles Clippers.
"Great game by him," Kyle Lowry said, reflecting on Curry's performance while speaking to Doris Burke in the postgame on-court interview.
"That's what a two-time MVP should do. He probably had more in the tank but he did everything he could do tonight. 47 points but we found a way to get the team victory."
Draymond Green, who was below his best (17 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals) by his standards, believed that the Warriors could have won if he played better and provided Curry more support.
"He [Stephen Curry] was amazing. I got to play better and offer him more help. I think if I played better with the night that he had, we would have won."
Raptors' reserve guard Fred VanVleet, who spent most of the game guarding Curry, gave credit where credit was due.
"There are guys in this league that are very hard to guard; he's [Curry] one of them. He's an elite offensive player and one of the top players of all time."
Curry's points total is the second-most in a Finals loss in NBA history, but the three-time champion, speaking on his effort and leaving it all on the court, was all positive looking ahead to Game 4.
"Nothing special, to be honest, it's just trying to make the right play, give everything you got, sacrifice your body when you have the opportunity," he said.
"There are guys on our team that do that on a nightly basis, and tonight just happened to be in a losing effort. So we got to keep that same mentality and just play a full 48 like we're accustomed to doing."
Game 4 could be the last game played at the Oracle Arena and Kerr expects Klay Thompson to return after missing Game 3 with a hamstring injury.
Will that be enough to help the Warriors level the series?
Game 4 tips off at 9:00 p.m on Saturday, June 7. Click here for the full Finals TV schedule.