During a historic final night in the NBA, the Golden State Warriors completed a feat nobody expected to happen. On Wednesday, the Warriors followed Stephen Curry’s lead to defeat the Memphis Grizzlies, 125-104. The Warriors now have the NBA’s best record at (73-9) and they didn’t need to break a sweat to do it. They broke Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls record of 72-wins, now they have to match it with another NBA title.
Curry shined so bright in the first quarter, it looked like he took the limitless pill early on. He scored 20 first quarter points, leading the Warriors to a 37-23 lead at the end of 12 minutes. He came out firing, connecting on six 3-pointers. He decimated the Grizzlies defense from deep all night.
Coming into the game, Curry needed eight more shots from downtown to reach 400. He made 10 of 19 from 3-point range to finish with 402 threes. And like so many times this season, Curry sat out the fourth quarter. He finished with 46 points in 30 minutes of action.
Curry wasn’t the only Warriors player to reach double figures. Klay Thompson also caught fire during a second quarter barrage. He poured in 12 of his 16 point, making all four of his 3-pointers during the run. By halftime, the Warriors turned the 13 point lead into an insurmountable 20-point lead.
Head coach Steve Kerr was part of that Bulls team, so their had to be mixed feelings no matter what. But hey, records are made to be broken.
“It’s a great way to finish off what was an amazing regular season,” Kerr said. “I just told our guys I never in a million years would have guessed that that record would ever be broken. I thought it was like DiMaggio’s hit streak, really. I was wrong, but I will say the same thing now that I said 20 years ago. I don’t think this one will ever be broken. Somebody’s got to go 74-8. I don’t see it, and I hope our fans aren’t expecting that next year.
Well, the Warriors could have easily gone 74-8 this season. Think of some of the bizarre losses they had. After starting 24-0, the Warriors took their first defeat in Milwaukee. They also lost on a Sunday to the Los Angeles Lakers. However, it was the two home losses that really made the quest for 73 almost unattainable. First, they suffered a home loss to the Boston Celtics in a thrilling finish. A few days later, the Minnesota Timberwolves shocked the Warriors in Overtime. At that point, the Warriors were reeling and the wins’ record seemed to be safe with a pair of games against the San Antonio Spurs left.
Even Draymond Green felt a little out of sorts after the loss to the Timberwolves. He thought the team may have been a little bored, but the Warriors regrouped just in time to snatch the 20-year-old record. Green chipped in 11 points, nine rebounds and seven assists in the season finale. He also had the tip-in to keep the record alive last Saturday against the Grizzlies.
“It means I’m part of the best team ever,” Green said later, still palming the game ball. “Not many people can say that– 15 guys can say that and that’s amazing.”
It will be even more amazing if the Warriors complete the postseason with their second consecutive NBA title. Otherwise, 73 wins may just be a footnote in the history of the NBA. The legend who just had his team’s record broken congratulated the Warriors historical accomplishment. He knows it’s all about the postseason as well.
”I want to congratulate the Warriors on their amazing season,” Jordan said. ”The game of basketball is always evolving and records are made to be broken. The Warriors have been a lot of fun to watch and I look forward to seeing what they do in the playoffs.”
The Warriors commence their playoff push on Saturday against the Houston Rockets. The two teams faced off in the Western Conference finals last season.