Warriors seek one last Oracle win

Source:AFP Published: 2019/6/12 19:33:40

Farewell game on Thursday at NBA’s oldest arena

Stephen Curry (left) of the Golden State Warriors is defended by Danny Green of the Toronto Raptors during Game 5 of the 2019 NBA Finals at Scotiabank Arena on Monday in Toronto, Canada. Photo: VCG

There's one last tipoff coming for the Golden State Warriors at the NBA's oldest arena, with the reigning league champions hoping to pull off one last victory for Oakland fans.

The Warriors defeated Toronto 106-105 Monday to pull within 3-2 in the best-of-seven NBA Finals, forcing a Game 6 Thursday at Oracle Arena.

"Our goal was to get them back on the plane, get them back to Oakland," Warriors guard Klay Thompson said. "We owe our fans one more game in Oracle."

With Golden State moving to a new $1 billion arena in San Francisco for next season, the playoff matchup marks the final contest at the 53-year-old venue, which the Warriors have called home since 1971.

After losing twice at Oracle to the Raptors last week, the Warriors would force a winner-take-all seventh game Sunday in Toronto if they can pull off a final home victory at Oracle.

"It has been an incredible experience to play and coach at Oracle and hopefully we can go out in style," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. "We're going to miss it here for sure. We're looking forward to the new arena. It's going to be amazing. But we'll always miss Oracle."

The arena, originally built for a National Hockey League expansion team that only lasted from 1967 to 1976, has hosted 66 concerts of The Grateful Dead, the band's most appearances at any venue.

The Warriors won two NBA titles while based in Philadelphia before moving to California and captured another in 1975, but have won three of the past four in their current dynasty run.

The only title won by the Warriors at Oracle Arena came in 2017 when Golden State defeated Cleveland in five games.

"This building has been very special," Warriors forward Draymond Green said. "So I think it's a very special time.

"This building has been great to us. It has been great to myself and all the guys that I've played with and we definitely want to close it out the right way and hang another banner on our way out."

Warriors swingman Andre Iguodala, the 2015 NBA Finals Most Valuable Player, recalled a seven-game first-round playoff loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in 2013 when asked about his favorite moments, recalling the loud support from a fan base that had seen only two prior playoff trips since 1994.

"First playoff series here was pretty exciting," he said. "We hadn't priced out many people yet, so it was good.

"We've had a great support system with our fans, one of the best fan bases in the whole Bay Area. Being on the Oakland side, they really have been with this team throughout good and bad. So it would be sweet to end it well for them."


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