HOUSTON – Day after day, from the opening night in Oakland on, the anticipation raged on, a fire building in the direction of an inferno. The Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets, the defending champion and his most legitimate threat – a tantalizing matchup that offers enough star power for a city. Their collision seemed fateful, inevitable, a playoff series that would determine the postseason.
After so many months, the title contenders delivered on Monday night in a thriving Toyota Center that was full of leather fans, a performance that met even the highest expectations. They yelled hoarsely and in-house music that pounded like a Las Vegas nightclub.
The Warriors absorbed many blows from the Rockets in the first game of the Western Conference Finals, but as is often the case, the Warriors used a second half. The game was tied in the break, but then came the third quarter, where Golden State's opponents in this Off-season by a League Best had surpassed 62 points in the evening. And once again, the Warriors gained their strongest edge in the frame, claiming a seven-point lead as it ended.
In the fourth, the Rockets fought, but could never reduce the deficit too far before the warriors countered with a timely bucket. Warriors Swingman Klay Thompson buried a 3-pointer in 3 minutes and 55 seconds in the third quarter, throwing the Warriors down to 1
Kevin Durant wore the Warriors with 37 points on 14 of 27 shootings. Thompson added 28 points to 9 of 18 shootings. Stephen Curry had 8 points out of 8 at night, but he added eight assists and six rebounds.
Draymond Green earned the fastest technical foul in the regular season or in the postseason game, taking a chance at 10:53 in the first quarter after pushing James Harden after Harden got over early Durant had laid. Green finished the season with five points, nine assists and nine rebounds.
Harden was dazzling in the beginning and scored nine points in the first two minutes, the most he scored in the first two minutes of a regular game season or postseason.
The NBA MVP leader finished with 41 points his first game with 30 or more points against the Warriors since April 27, 2016. Chris Paul added 23 points and 11 assists for Houston.
Many statistical categories were nearly balanced, but the Warriors had crucial points in fast breakpoints (18-3) and in points (17-9).
Another key figure: The Warriors scored 54 points with undisputed gazes. For ESPN Stats & Information, the Rockets have been in the season's most play-offs this season, allowing most postseason and most aftermath. The Warriors made eight open 3-pointers, including Thompson's dagger, and shot a total of 23-of-31 on undisputed glances.
The Rockets scored 35 points on 16 out of 21 shots on unchallenged shots on Monday.  The Warriors set their "Hamptons Five" grid by Durant, Curry, Thompson Andre Iguodala and Green, a unit that has denied the game in the 54 minutes on the court in the postseason, by 54 points. 19659002] But with Paul and Harden leading the charge, the Rockets have brought the Warriors bucket together for buckets – at least early.
Game 2 is Wednesday in Houston.