Photo credit: Sue Ogrocki AP Photo
~ By Pearl Allison Lo
~ As Oklahoma City Thunder’s Enes Kanter’s hands went down with 0.6 seconds left, it was a sign of the unbelievableness that is Golden State’s Stephen Curry, in a 121-118 win Saturday.
The left ankle that took Curry out in the third for five minutes was gone in the rearview mirror, as Curry broke his own NBA single season record for three’s, was the first with ten three’s back-to-back (tweet by Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle) and tied the NBA record for most three’s in a game. His double double stat included 46 points.
Another footnote was the Warriors’ guaranteed playoff spot during the fourth quarter after the San Antonio Spurs beat the Houston Rockets.
The Thunder’s Kevin Durant fouled out for the first time in three years with 4:13 left in overtime. He ended with a season-high seven three’s and a second straight double double, this one 37 points and 12 rebounds. Oklahoma City was +15 with Durant on the floor.
The Warriors trailed for most of the game, but perhaps the short times when they came close were a sign.
Oklahoma City got off to an 8-0 run to start, their biggest lead of the game reaching 14 points with 2:58 left in the first.
Golden State’s Andre Iguodala was their best player in the first. From the bench, he led with eight points, a perfect 4-of-4. Iguodala would also be the one to lead the game to overtime.
Three 3’s from Curry with teammate Marreese Speights in between, made it 41-42 with 4:25 left in the half. That only lasted 19 seconds.
Curry left the game at 10:29 in the third after an assist to Harrison Barnes. The pass was followed by a consecutive fall with the Thunder’s Russell Westbrook. Westbrook landed on Curry’s left ankle. Curry came back with 5:10 left and his first play was a steal off Westbrook.
The Warriors got to within one again with 3:35 left and tied the game with 2:27 left.
Curry’s seventh 3 pointer with 1:22 left to make it 78-77, gave Golden State their first lead.
Durant doubled his first half three point total with three in the third to lead his team that quarter. His fifth and sixth three at the end of the third gave him 30 points.
Curry and teammate Klay Thompson scored in the double digits, as Golden State scored 32 points.
The Warriors stalled a bit in the fourth, not scoring until 8:56 left.
Another three by Curry made it 92-96 with 2:53 left. Teammate Draymond Green made it 93-96 with a free throw.
With 1:37 left, a Curry three pulled Golden State to within two points.
Thompson then joined the three party with his first, as the Splash Brothers continued the clutch shots, this one with 35 seconds left. Durant hit a three with 14 seconds left, Thompson hit a two, then defensively, stole the ball from Durant as Green saved the ball. Iguodala was then fouled and hit two clutch free throws with 0.7 seconds left. Green defended Durant as he missed Oklahoma City’s last attempt in regulation. Green and Iguodala finished a +10 for the game.
In overtime, a steal by Green precipitated Curry’s 10th three. Curry’s 11th tied the game at 110 with 2:29 left. Thompson hit another three with 1:29 left. He finished with 32 points.
Game notes: The Thunder outrebounded Golden State by 30 and had 20 more paint points. Other double doubles in the game were earned by Oklahoma City’s Serge Ibaka, a season-high 20 rebounds and 15 points and Westbrook, 26 points and 13 assists. Green’s, 14 rebounds and 14 assists, had a little more to it. He tied a season-low in points with two and had a season-high six steals. Both teams were 3-0 in overtime before it started. The Warriors will be back at it, kicking off March against the Atlanta Hawks at 7:30pm