NBA-Wounded Warriors show strength in depth to stop Raptors

By Steve Keating

By Steve Keating

TORONTO, June 3 (Reuters) - Klay Thompson pulled a muscle, Stephen Curry was lightheaded and Kevin Durant remained on the injury list but the Golden State Warriors head home with the NBA Finals deadlocked at 1-1 after a tense 109-104 win over the Toronto Raptors on Sunday.

The Warriors missed two-time reigning NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant for a seventh consecutive game and now could be without sharpshooting Thompson, who scored a team high 25 points before hobbling off the court in the fourth quarter with a suspected hamstring injury.

And there was more bad news for Warriors coach Steve Kerr with Kevon Looney adding his name to the wounded list leaving with a shoulder problem.

"Klay said he'll be fine but Klay could be half dead and he would say he would be fine," said Kerr. "We'll see. He pulled his hamstring.

"He thinks it is minor, so I don't know what that means going forward."

For all their talent the most impressive thing about the two-time reigning champions' post-season performance has been their resiliency and depth.

Some of the new injury concerns could be offset by Durant's imminent return, perhaps as early as Game Three on Wednesday.

Before Durant suffered a calf injury during Game Five of the Western Conference semi-finals three weeks ago, he was in the midst of yet another dominant post-season run, averaging 34.2 points per game in 11 contests.

The injuries have forced Kerr to lean on his bench which delivered again with Quinn Cook, Australian Andrew Bogut and Swede Jonas Jerebko providing productive minutes.

"I'm very proud of our team and in particular all the guys off the bench," said Kerr.

"Quinn Cook hit some huge shots, Bogut came in gave us big minutes, Jerebko as well. So it was a hell of an effort from the bench."

Curry, who finished with 23 points, left the game briefly and headed to the locker room saying he simply did not feel right but returned to lead a third quarter charge that swung the contest in the Warriors' favor.

With Game Three not until Wednesday Curry said he will have plenty of time to recover but even if he did not, someone would be ready to step in.

"Coach always talks about it, that everybody's going to have a chance to help us win a championship at some point, and just to stick with it and be patient," said Curry.

"And it shows itself over the course of a season and tonight was huge.

"We need three more wins and we need it to keep going, but that's a part of who we are in our DNA, it's not just what we say." (Editing by Sudipto Ganguly)