The revamped Golden State Warriors failed to protect a late double-digit lead against the Boston Celtics in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, as they lost in historic fashion with a staggering fourth-quarter meltdown. But their mistakes weren't repeated in Game 2 -- they defended homecourt by keeping their foot on the gas pedal until the final buzzer sounded.
With a comfortable 23-point lead entering the final quarter, Golden State took care of business on Sunday at Chase Center, cruising to a 107-88 victory over Boston to even the series at one game apiece. For the second straight game, Stephen Curry led the Warriors in points, contributing 29, and the third quarter featured a 35-14 run -- similar to the Celtics' fourth-quarter burst in Game 1.
"How many great teams have we seen get to a Finals, we say they'll be back, and they never get back?" Warriors radio voice Tim Roye told After Hours with Amy Lawrence on Monday. "There are teams that've never played in a Finals. That's how hard this is. So, I think the fact they went through two down years -- Curry missed almost an entire year, Klay missed two, and Draymond's been banged up because they're getting older.
"A lot of mileage on the tires. And that kind of sacrifice makes it even sweeter [to be in the NBA Finals again]. To be down on the map, with the worst record in the league, and two years later, you're back near the top, and trying to get back to the top. I think that's why they're saying this one run is really sweet -- because of where they had to come from to get back here."
Golden State, which clinched the West's third seed with a 53-29 record, will visit Boston for Game 3 on Wednesday night, with tipoff scheduled for 9 ET. According to FiveThirtyEight's projections, the Warriors currently have an 18-percent chance to capture their fourth league title since 2015. If the Celtics hoist the Larry O'Brien trophy, it'll be their league-record 18th in team history.
The entire NBA conversation between Roye and Lawrence can be accessed in the audio player above.
You can follow After Hours With Amy Lawrence on Twitter @ALawRadio and @AfterHoursCBS, and Tom Hanslin @TomHanslin.