Durant, Thompson enough as Warriors overwhelm Blazers
ABS-CBN Sports on Dec 12, 2017 01:51 PM
FILE - DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 4: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors warms up before the game against the Denver Nuggets on November 4, 2017 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images)
By Janie McCauley, Associated Press
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Kevin Durant had 28 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots, leading the short-handed Golden State Warriors past the sluggish Portland Trail Blazers 111-104 on Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time).
Klay Thompson overcame a cold shooting start to score 24 points as Golden State played without two-time MVP Stephen Curry, who is nursing a sprained right ankle and missed his third straight game. Draymond Green sat out with a sore right shoulder, while starting center Zaza Pachulia was sidelined for his second game in a row because of soreness in his left shoulder.
Damian Lilliard scored a season-high 39 points with five three-pointers playing back home in Oakland. He hit a three-pointer late in the first half with Durant in his face and pumped his arm to celebrate.
Durant, who earned Western Conference Player of the Week honors on Monday (Tuesday, PHL time), shot 11-for-21 and Nick Young contributed 12 points in 13 minutes off the bench before leaving with a concussion in the third quarter.
David West scored in double figures over consecutive games for the first time with the Warriors and his first since 2015-16 for San Antonio.
Rookie Jordan Bell scored in double figures for the second time with 11 points, while Omri Casspi and Shaun Livingston also started for the defending champions, who were coming off a 6-0 road trip. It marked the franchise’s first time doing so in that long of a stretch away from home.
Now, the Warriors will get to stay home for almost the entire rest of the year except for a trip to face the Lakers on Dec. 18 (Dec. 19, PHL time).
CJ McCollum scored 21 points and Zach Collins added season-bests of nine points and seven rebounds before fouling out of Portland’s fifth straight loss. This marked the first meeting of the season between the West rivals after Golden State took all four games last regular season and then swept the Blazers in the first round of the playoffs.
The Warriors have won the last seven regular-season meetings and also seven in a row at home.
After missing his first four three-point tries, Thompson hit from deep in the final 30 seconds of the first half as the Warriors led 59-47 at the break.
As he expected to do this winter, Matt Barnes announced his retirement on Monday (Tuesday, PHL time).
Barnes, who received his Warriors championship ring Nov. 27 (Nov. 28, PHL time) at Oracle when Golden State hosted his former Kings and hometown team, posted his news on Instagram with a selfie.
“Had a cool 15yr run!! Traveled the world met alota cool people, some will be brothers for the rest of my life!” he wrote, later adding, “Love me or HATE ME, I DID IT MY WAY!!”
Trail Blazers: Lillard notched his 10th 30-point performance of the season. ... The Blazers made their initial 23 free throws before a miss and wound up 23-of-25 from the line. ... Portland led 28-27 after the first but gave up a 15-4 burst in the second.
Warriors: Durant passed John Stockton (19,711 points) for 44th place on NBA career scoring list. ... Andre Iguodala played his 1,000th career regular-season game, becoming one of 126 players in NBA history to do so. ... Second-year guard Patrick McCaw returned after missing two games with a concussion and bruised nose. Young will enter the concussion protocol. ... Curry rode a stationary bike during the morning shootaround. Pachulia took some one-handed shots during warmups. ... Golden State committed five first-quarter turnovers and 14 in all.
Trail Blazers: At Miami on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time).
Warriors: Host the Mavericks on Thursday (Friday, PHL time).