L.A. stole Game 1 of the series on the road on Tuesday, putting the Lakers in the driver’s seat for now. The best-of-seven battle figures to be unforgettable, and Lakers veteran Tristan Thompson thinks folks should appreciate it while it lasts.
“What we’re witnessing right now is something that we literally might not see for the next 20 years with guys playing at a high level and being the best on both teams in the playoffs,” Tristian Thompson told The Athletic. “We just gotta absorb it and be thankful to be a part of it.”
As fans know well, James and Curry have tons of history playing against each other in the playoffs. Tuesday’s game marked the 23rd overall playoff meeting between the two superstars, with all 22 of their previous playoff matchups coming in the NBA Finals.
During James’ time with the Cleveland Cavaliers, he faced Curry and the Warriors four years in a row in the Finals. Curry’s squad prevailed three of those times, though James led the Cavs to arguably the most meaningful title of the rivalry in 2016.
This season, James and Curry are on roughly equal playing fields in the sense that their teams are similarly dangerous. However, in Game 1, the Lakers looked like the better team, and the Warriors are going to need to make some adjustments moving forward in order to keep up with Los Angeles.
In the series opener, James wasn’t terribly impressive. He did post 22 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three blocks, but he shot just 9-for-24 from the field and 1-for-8 from deep.
Curry, meanwhile, had a solid evening, posting 27 relatively efficient points (especially thanks to his 6-for-13 mark from deep) while adding six boards and three assists.
But it wasn’t enough to overcome the Lakers, who got a 30-point, 23-rebound performance from Anthony Davis. Los Angeles is going to be virtually impossible to slow down if Davis keeps playing up to his standards.
Game 2 of the series is set for Thursday. The Warriors will look to win that one and even the series. The Lakers, on the other hand, will look to steal another one on the road and take a 2-0 lead over their in-state opponents.