ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The chlorine was just right at the Poole party as the Golden State Warriors defeated the Boston Celtics 104-94 in game five of the NBA Finals.
The Warriors needed a pivotal play to help them turn the tide against the Celtics, who stormed back into the game, opening up the third quarter on a 10-0 run to pull within two after trailing 51-39 at the half.
The men in green went on a 35-21 run in the third to take a 74-72 lead when Jaylen Brown missed a contested three-pointer as the shot clock expired.
Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins grabbed the rebound and dribbled up the court, where he found Poole running wide open up the left side of the floor.
The game clock dwindled to .03 seconds when Jordan Poole banked in another miracle shot, sparking the crowd and giving the dubs a 75-74 lead while heading into the fourth quarter.
In the words of the great philosopher Shawn Carter, “He did it again, haters no like, but they got to roll with it because the flow’s so tight.”
Coach Steve Kerr was about his thoughts on how his team ended the third quarter, and he was very jovial.
“Well, I liked that bank shot at the end,” said Kerr. “I just like our response. They hit us pretty hard there for most of the third, and our guys got a little momentum back, and we are right where we need to be.”
The old saying that you can’t catch lightning in a bottle is null and void as Poole caught lightning twice as he did the same thing at the end of the third quarter in game two.
Poole has been one of the most improved players in the league as he received a kit of votes in that category for that award.
He had a great regular season for the Warriors.
Including the playoffs, Poole is the third leading scorer, and although he has been playing at a seesaw level, he can get hot at any given moment.
Through his first two seasons, Poole averaged 10.3 points per game while shooting 38% from the field.
During the 2021-22 season, he is averaging 18.5 points per game while shooting 45% from the field.
Whenever he is allowed to make a play, he does it loudly.
“Whenever I was given an opportunity to make a play offensively or defensively to give our team a boost (I was able to), and luckily I was able to do that tonight,” Poole said. “I was able to hit a three early, and then in the second half, I was able to get it going late, and then in the third, I was able to give our team some momentum. But just be aggressive and try to make shots and make plays for my teammates.”
Making plays for his teammates sure did help the stat line for Wiggins, who got the assist on the bomb three-pointer to end the third.
Wiggins had a team-high 26 points and 13 rebounds on 12 of 23 shooting from the field with two assists.
Wiggins had many vital plays, but his loudest one involved Poole.
“It’s supreme confidence every time,” Poole said. “You kind of have to shoot it. Don’t think about it. My teammates know I want the ball every time in that position, no matter if it’s at the end of quarters or the end of shot clocks. Wiggins even told me he was looking for me because I make shots like that all of the time. Be ready for the moment potentially. I was able to step up and hit a big one today.”
Game six is Thursday at 9 p.m. in Beantown. Will the Warriors seal the deal on another title, or with the C’s stave off elimination and force a game seven back at the Chase Center? What are your thoughts?