Barry: Warriors poised to get it done 

I am not a gambler. I don't like games of chance. I always want to be in control of my own destiny and not leave my fate to the odds. With Game 5 of the Western Conference finals set for tonight, the Warriors are the odds-on favorites to beat the Houston Rockets and clinch the series.

I believe in the Warriors so much, I would almost call it a sure thing. However, in sports, there are no sure bets. The game will be played.

The Rockets will need to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds to dig themselves out of this 3-1 hole. Impossible? No. Unlikely? Yes. First, no team in the history of the NBA has ever won a series when trailing 3-0. Second, the Rockets have yet to defeat the Warriors at Oracle Arena this season.

What's more, the Rockets, with three straight elimination-game victories over the Los Angeles Clippers and another in Game 4 against Golden State, would still have to win three more in a row to pull off the upset. Impossible? No. Unlikely? Yes.

I am sure Rockets fans are a bit more optimistic after their team's victory in Game 4. The Warriors' overall performance was subpar, and the Rockets were able to hold off several come-back charges. My biased optimism, however, makes me believe that the Dubs will prevail.

I look at the Game 4 loss this way: Houston shot amazing percentages from 2- and 3-point territory — 59 and 53 percent, respectively. James Harden was virtually unstoppable.

The Warriors shot poorly from both areas and found themselves in a 25-point hole at one point. Stephen Curry took a frightening fall and missed 12 minutes of play. The Dubs normally outstanding defense gave up 128 points, the most in any game this season. Despite all of these negatives, I still found some very positive aspects to the game.

The Warriors got off to a terrible start but never backed off, cutting the deficit to just six with plenty of time left in the fourth quarter. With Curry out for almost a quarter, Klay Thompson rediscovered his 3-point shooting touch, going 6 for 13. Harrison Barnes, who was 0 for 9 in Game 3, also found his offensive rhythm, finishing with 14 points on 6 of 13 shooting. Golden State<0x2019>s bench outscored Houston's, 33-22. Perhaps most important, after a shaky return to the floor, Curry finished 3 of 6 from beyond the arc.

I expect some if not most of that to carry over tonight, which points to a Warriors win and a Western Conference crown.

Rick Barry played eight seasons for the Warriors and was the captain of their only Bay Area NBA championship team. In 1987, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. His commentary will appear exclusively in The San Francisco Examiner throughout the playoffs.

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