The Warriors could join an exclusive club should they clinch the NBA title in Game 6

BOSTON — Players will say winning a playoff game on the road is one of the most difficult things to do in basketball. But a road win at TD Garden in Game 6 would put the Warriors on an exclusive list of teams to win an NBA title in Boston.

The Celtics have hosted the NBA Finals 22 times, including this year, and won 17 of them, and only the 1985 Los Angeles Lakers have won an NBA title in Boston. Up 3-2 in their sixth NBA Finals appearance in eight years, the Warriors have a chance to become just the second visiting team in history to win on the parquet floor.

That Showtime Lakers team featuring 25-year-old Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul Jabbar and James Worthy beat a Celtics team with Larry Bird, Robert Parish and Kevin McHale in six games at the Boston Garden.

But making history won’t be easy.

Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala and Kevon Looney have experienced their fair share of closeout games, at least. The Warriors are a cool 21-10 in closeout games in the Steve Kerr era since 2015.

“Thankfully I think having been here six times, been in a lot of different closeout type of opportunities, you just understand what the nerves are like. You can rely on that experience, for sure,” Curry said. “We understand the specifics of how we need to approach the game from a physicality perspective, our game plan adjustments from Game 5 to Game 6, understanding what the building is going to feel like, that energy, being prepared for it.”

The Warriors lost each of their first closeout game opportunities during this playoff run.

The Denver Nuggets eked out a win in the first round, preventing the Warriors from a sweep and the Memphis Grizzlies beat them by 39 points in Game 5 of the semifinals. The Dallas Mavericks beat them in Game 4 by 10 to prevent a Warriors sweep in the conference finals.

Kerr said at shoot around before Game 6 that he sensed a level of confidence in the locker room.

“The guys all know what’s at stake, and it’s a great opportunity,” Kerr said before the game. “As a coach, you try to help prepare the guys mentally for what’s coming. You have to go out and play with the desperation that got you this far but without the anxiety that can come with thinking about clinching. You can’t think about any of that. You’ve got to just think about executing one minute at a time, one play at a time, and that’s the focus tonight.”

Contributed by local news sources

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