The Golden State Warriors and the Portland Trail Blazers will meet in the Western Conference Finals with the winner of the series going to the NBA Finals.
The Warriors got to this point by defeating the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round and the Houston Rockets in the second round. It is their fifth straight trip to the Western Conference Finals.
Portland will be making its first conference finals appearance since 2000. The Trail Blazers last made the conference semifinals in 2016 and lost to the Warriors in five games.
Here are some things you should know about this Western Conference Finals matchup, the series schedule and how you can watch.
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1). Curry brothers will make history
The Warriors’ Stephen Curry will be going up against his brother Seth Curry, who plays for the Trail Blazers. It’s the first time in NBA history that brothers will be playing against each other in the conference finals.
2). Kevin Durant is injured
Kevin Durant suffered a strained calf against the Rockets and is likely out for Games 1 and 2. Durant, the two-time NBA Finals MVP, suffered the injury in Game 5 against Houston. Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr told reporters ahead of Game 1 against the Trail Blazers he would have an update on Durant’s injury later in the week.
3). C.J. McCollum and Kevin Durant have some beef
In the summer, Trail Blazers star C.J. McCollum hosted Kevin Durant on his podcast. Durant told McCollum the Trail Blazers would never win a championship. The conversation between the two players has resurfaced ahead of their Western Conference Finals matchup.
4). Eyes on mid-major schools
Three stars who will have the spotlight shined on them in the series have come from mid-major schools. Stephen Curry attended Davidson, C.J. McCollum was drafted out of Lehigh and Damian Lillard went to Weber State. The Western Conference Finals will put some of the smaller school across the nation on the map.
5). Damian Lillard comes home
Though it will be tough for Portland to play on the road against the Warriors, it will be more of a homecoming for Damian Lillard who grew up in Oakland. Lillard grew up blocks away from the Oracle Arena, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. He called the possibility of playing in Oakland, as the Warriors are getting ready to say goodbye to the arena, a “storybook moment.”
“I think it’s a storybook moment,” he said, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. “For this being the last year playing in Oakland, me growing up here — I had season tickets to watch the Warriors play. You know, it’s a special ending. Hopefully, it will end the right way for us.”
Warriors vs. Trail Blazers series schedule
Game 1: May 14 @ Golden State
Game 2: May 16 @ Golden State
Game 3: May 18 @ Portland
Game 4: May 20 @ Portland
Game 5: May 22 @ Golden State (if necessary)
Game 6: May 24 @ Portland (if necessary)
Game 7: May 26 @ Golden State (if necessary)
How to Watch
Each Western Conference Finals game will be broadcast on ESPN. Each game will start at 9 p.m. ET.