The Bay Area was between much-needed storms Friday night. So the Golden State Warriors and the Portland Trail Blazers decided to pick up the slack by raining 3s at Oracle Arena.
The teams combined to set a new NBA record with 37 3-pointers. Portland shot 19-of-36 (52.8 percent) from 3-point range. Golden State countered by going 18-of-40 (45.0 percent) from beyond the arc. However, the last laugh belonged to the Warriors as the final score read 128-112 in favor of the home team. The win avenged Golden State’s 32-point loss to the Blazers on Feb. 19.
“I don’t think there was revenge,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I think there was respect. There was a sense that this is a good team that’s playing very well and that’s tough to guard. To me, they are one of the hardest team in the league to guard. I think our guys understood that challenge and took it on and played well.”
The Splash Brothers led the Warriors by combining for 71 points on 26-of-45 shooting, including 15-of-26 from distance. Klay Thompson shot 8-of-11 on 3s and finished with a game-high 37 points. Curry scored 34 points on 7-of-14 shooting from beyond the arc. It’s the 10th time in their career that the dynamic duo have combined to score 70-plus points. Draymond Green added 17 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists.
Golden State improved to 58-6 and extended its NBA-record regular-season home win streak to 47 games.
It was a rude homecoming for Damian Lillard. The Oakland-native scored 17 points on just 5-of-19 shooting. Lillard had been averaging 33.5 points on 48 percent shooting since the All-Star break, including a career-high 51-point effort in the blowout win against the Warriors.
“We didn’t do anything special (defensively),” Kerr said. “We just did a better job of pressuring, getting on the ball. Trying to be more aggressive. But nothing different scheme-wise. We just played a little harder and he missed some shots that he hit the last time we played him.”
C.J. McCollum led Portland (34-32) with 18 points. Gerald Henderson and Brian Roberts scored 12 and 11 points, respectively. Meyers Leonard had 10 points and 13 rebounds. Mason Plumlee added 10 points and nine rebounds.
The Warriors proved again why they are more than just a jump-shooting team. Even on a night when they got out-splashed, they still came away with a double-digit victory over a quality opponent.
Golden State won with defense, holding Portland to just 36 percent shooting from inside the arc. The Warriors also tied a season-low with eight turnovers. The Blazers finished with zero fastbreak points.
“That was something we talked about a lot yesterday in our meeting,” Kerr said. “The guys really responded. Our focus was great. Ball movement was good. When you don’t turned it over, you tend to defend better. I thought we defended well. It’s a great shooting team we played. Obviously, they made 19 3s. But I didn’t feel like our defense was bad. We might have given up a few on mistakes on rotation. But for the most part, our defense was really good.”
The Warriors took command of the game by scoring 40 points in the opening quarter. Then they followed up with a 41-point second quarter. The 81 points is the highest first-half output by any team this season.
Thompson got it started early. He nailed his first two 3-pointers. Then things got strange. The shots might have been too close, but Thompson and Curry combined to miss four straight layups. Thompson misfired on one more 3-pointer before nailing back-to-back shots from the arc to give Golden State a 16-9 lead.
“Klay came out blazing, me not so much,” Curry said. “It took me awhile to get into it. He brought a lot of energy on both ends of the floor and we kind of fed off of that.”
Once Curry did get into it, the Blazers had no chance for another upset.
Curry missed his first three attempts, but rebounded to make seven of his next nine shots and finished with 18 points in the first quarter. The Blazers couldn’t keep up as they scored 27 points on 36.4 percent from the field, including 4-of-13 (30.7 percent) from inside the arc.
The Warriors kept the pace up in the second quarter. It was a complete team effort as 10 players scored. Thompson hit three more 3-pointers. The lead was 20 at halftime and ballooned to 32 midway through the third quarter.
The Blazers used a 13-0 run to close within 110-96 early in the fourth quarter, but Thompson was subbed in and scored seven straight points to restore a 21-point lead for Golden State. This is the Warriors’ sixth wire-to-wire win.
Despite the blowout win, there were two injury concerns for the Warriors. Curry left the game briefly in the third quarter after banging knees with Noah Vonleh. Curry returned two minutes later.
The bigger concern is Andre Iguodala, who suffered a left ankle sprain while he and Lillard scrambled for a loose ball. Lillard dived and undercut Iguodala. Lillard was called for a foul on the play. Iguodala made one of two free throws before limping to the locker room. X-rays were negative and his status is questionable for Saturday’s game against the Phoenix Suns.
Chasing 72-10: The Warriors remain one game ahead of the pace set by the 1995-96 Bulls.