• Kurtis Tatkenhorst

May 28- Klay Thompson makes an NBA Playoff record 11 3-pointers to beat the OKC Thunder in 2016

2016- On this day in sports history, Klay Thompson broke an NBA playoff game record 11 3-pointers as the Golden State Warriors beat the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game 6 of the 2016 Western Conference Finals. The Warriors won the game 108-101 behind Klay Thompson’s 41 points and going 11-18 from the 3-point line. Steph Curry would score 31 points and Draymond Green added 12 points and 12 rebounds. Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook had great nights for the Thunder as they scored 29 and 28 points, respectively. However, the Thunder teammates couldn’t stop Klay Thompson as he was the story of the night.

Before Klay Thompson broke the record, the previous high for most 3-pointers in a NBA Playoff game was 9. Jason Terry, Vince Carter, Rex Chapman, and Ray Allen (twice) each had an NBA playoff game where they made 9 3-Pointers. Damian Lillard has gotten the closest to Klay Thompson’s record when he made 10 for the Portland Trailblazers in a playoff game in 2019, but no one has yet to match Thompson’s performance.


Klay Thompson’s record breaking performance was much needed for the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors were going into the game facing elimination as the Thunder held a 3 games to 2 lead. The Thunder started out the series up 3-1 and only needed one more win to eliminate the Warriors. Steph Curry scored 31points to lead the Warriors as they won Game Five 120-111. Game six was at Oklahoma City and the Thunder held an eight point lead, 83-75, going into the third quarter. It was looking like the Warriors were going to be defeated. Klay Thompson scored the first nine points of the quarter from three 3-pointers. With 1:35 left in a tied game, Klay Thompson hit his 11th 3-pointer to put the Warriors up for good. The Warriors would outscore the Thunder 33-18 over the 4th quarter to earn a 108-101 victory. This forced a Game 7 at Golden State which the Warriors won 96-88. The Thunder, who once held a 3-1 lead, would be eliminated by the Warriors.

Golden State would go on to the NBA finals where they faced the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James. It was then the Warriors' turn to build a 3-1 game lead over the Cavaliers. The Cavaliers fought back and won the series in seven games, just as the Warriors had over the Thunder. LeBron James went back to Cleveland with the goal to deliver them an NBA Championship which he has now accomplished. In the following offseason, Kevin Durant signed a free agent deal with Golden State. The move was widely criticized as Durant went to the team that eliminated them in the Western Conference Finals.


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Sources:

Photo: Tyler Smith EPA

Bwitt. “Warriors Stay Alive After Game 6 Thriller.” Golden State Warriors, NBA, 29 May 2016

“Golden State Warriors at Oklahoma City Thunder Box Score, May 28, 2016.” Basketball Reference



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