It was in question for much of the game, but the Golden State Warriors eventually found a way to take a 2-0 series lead with a win over the Trail Blazers.
In Game 2, the Warriors trailed by as many as 17 points, entered the half down 15 points and trailed by eight points with under five minutes remaining in regulation. Like we've seen many times before, the back-to-back defending champs came up big when it mattered most, closing the game on a 14-3 run to earn a three-point win.
In his postgame press conference, Golden State head coach Steve Kerr acknowledged that his team was fortunate to come away with a victory, telling reporters "We stole that game. I thought they outplayed us for much of the night - the majority of the night - but we brought enough competitive fire in the second half to overcome their great play.
"We stole that game."- NBA TV (@NBATV) May 17, 2019
Hear from Steve Kerr after the @warriors win Game 2 114-111. #NBAPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/08zmUvBmbU
"We've been here before, I think our experience helped us," Kerr added" we've done this a few times and we stole it for sure. They outplayed us."
Among the players that have been in that position before, Stephen Curry (18 points) and Klay Thompson (15 points) put forth big scoring performances in the second half, while Andre Iguodala made one of the biggest plays of the night with his defence on Damian Lillard in the game's waning seconds.
Portland's CJ McCollum, who has now faced Golden State three times in the postseason, echoed Kerr's sentiment, saying that "they stole it, but they earned it down the stretch. They made more plays than us in the last three minutes."
McCollum finished Game 2 with 22 points but saw some positives despite the loss, adding "I like our chances going forward. I like the way we came out and competed, we gotta bring that same energy at home…"
"They stole it, but they earned it down the stretch."- NBA TV (@NBATV) May 17, 2019
CJ McCollum speaks on Game 2 in the WCF of the #NBAPlayoffs. pic.twitter.com/y6Nyz6h8tQ
The Trail Blazers had opportunities to win despite McCollum (9-for-23) and All-Star Damian Lillard (6-for-16) combining to shoot just 38.4% from the field.
In Game 3, Portland will look to use its home crowd to avoid falling into a historically insurmountable series deficit while Golden State looks to use its experience to avoid being outplayed for the second straight game.