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Blazers vs. Warriors 2016 final score: Golden State advances with 125-121 Game 5 win

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The Warriors are heading to the conference finals after finishing off the Blazers.

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors booked their second straight trip to the Western Conference Finals with a 125-121 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 5 on Wednesday night. Klay Thompson scored 33, Stephen Curry added 29 points and Draymond Green put up a double-double (13 points, 11 rebounds) as Golden State finished off the 4-1 series win.

Curry, coming off an air ball the previous possession, hit a monster step-back three-pointer with 24.9 seconds in regulation that effectively put away the game. Let us relive the final nail in Portland's coffin:

The Blazers didn't go down without a fight, though. They led for large portions of Game 5 and kept it close through the fourth quarter by absorbing the Warriors' best blows. With an advantage on the boards (47-44) and the three-point shot falling (16-of-36), Portland managed to keep up with the defending champs most of the game.

The only problem was getting late stops, and that's something most teams have struggled with against Golden State. The Blazers are still a young team. Overcoming the defending champs on the road in a must-win playoff game was asking just a bit too much.

Damian Lillard led Portland with 28 points and C.J. McCollum was right behind with 27. Allen Crabbe, an upcoming free agent who probably earned himself some extra attention with his effort, added 20 points on 7-of-9 shooting in 33 minutes. For Golden State, Curry added 11 assists to join Green in posting double-doubles.

The Warriors came into this series heavily favored after winning 29 more games than the Blazers during the regular season, and it showed. Portland fought admirably, even stealing a game against a Curry-less Golden State to avoid the sweep, but couldn't survive any longer against the superior opponent.

Here are three things we learned:

Portland's backcourt deserves respect

If the 2015-16 season proved anything for the Blazers, it's what a special backcourt they have in Lillard and McCollum. While the one-two punch might not be able to match the absurdity of Steph and Klay, Portland's own Splash Brothers were the only reason the team ever got this far. In Game 5, the two guards combined for 55 points on 47 shots. McCollum in particular was amazing down the stretch, repeatedly hitting clutch shots as the defense tried to key in on him and Lillard. While the Blazers' defense couldn't make its own stops on the other end to actually earn a win, it's clear the future is bright in Portland once the frontcourt comes together.

More Green coming

Get ready to see more and more of Draymond in the coming weeks. Last year, the Warriors increasingly used Green over big man Andrew Bogut deeper in the playoffs. Expect a similar scenario to play out again this year -- matchups withstanding -- especially after Bogut left Game 5 with an injury. It's unclear what Bogut's status is, but given the likelihood that Green and other smaller players were going to start eating into his minutes at some point anyway, his absence probably wouldn't be as significant as it might seem.

The real challenge comes up next

The Warriors should be proud they've reached the conference finals, especially given Curry's injuries, but the reality is that they beat two good-not-great teams to get there. Houston went .500 and Portland won 44 games during the regular season. Winning every series is impressive, but for the winningest team in NBA history, the real test will come from here. Whoever Golden State faces next -- OKC or San Antonio -- will be its toughest opponent yet, and an NBA Finals rematch against the Cavaliers still looms as a possibility, too. No matter what, the remaining matchups will be tougher than Houston or Portland.

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Stephen Curry's MVP season was on another level

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