The Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry (30) is amped up after scoring one his buckets that later totaled 62 points in the Warriors win over the Portland Trailblazers on Sun Jan 3, 2021 at Chase Center in San Francisco (USA Today photo)
By Jerry Feitelberg
The Golden State Warriors, who were blown out by the Portland Trail Blazers on New Year’s day, bounced back to win 137-122. Stephen Curry had one of his best games ever in his fantastic career. Curry knocked down a career-high 62 points in 36 minutes of action Sunday night. The two-time NBA MVP recorded his seventh-career 50-point plus game.
The Warriors’ head coach Steve Kerr had to think he saw the Warriors that won three NBA championships in five years. With Draymond Green back in the lineup, the Warriors excelled on defense.
Draymond also helped set up the offense as he was credited with eight assists. They moved the ball well, and that allowed Curry to make six threes in 12 tries. On defense, the Warriors outrebounded the Blazers 60-51.
They had four steals and seven blocks. The Warriors rookie sensation, James Wiseman, had his first career double-double. He kicked in with 12 points and eleven rebounds. The Blazers knocked 20 threes in Friday’s win over the Warriors. The Warriors’ defense held them to 14 Sunday night.
The Warriors, who were blown out in the first quarter Friday, wanted to get off to a good start Sunday night. The Blazers took an early 9-2 lead. Behind buckets by Curry, Kelly Oubre, Jr, and Andrew Wiggins, the Warriors rallied to tie the game.
Wiseman made a deuce, and Curry connected on a three to increase the lead to 17-12. The Blazers tied the game twice, 38, and 40 early in the second quarter. Eric Paschall made a bucket to put Golden Stae ahead 42-40.
Portland never regained the lead after that play. Curry, Wiggins, and Wiseman paced the Warrior attack from that point. The Warriors finished the first half with a 12 point lead 66-54. Curry scored 31 points to propel the Warriors into the lead.
The Warriors were able to keep the Blazers at bay in the third quarter. The Blazers’ all-star backcourt duo of Damian Lillard and C.J.McCollum started to connect on three-point shots. Steph Responded with threes of his own. The Warriors increased the lead to fourteen 97-83 at the end of the period. Curry had 45 at this point in the game.
The Blazers did not wilt. Lillard and McCollum had the talent to bring the Blazers back from a 14-point deficit. Curry had other thoughts as he recorded 17 points in the final stanza. The Blazers closed the gap to seven 113-106. Curry, Wiggins, and Oubre all made baskets to prevent the Blazers from getting any closer. The Warriors were able to cruise to victory by a final of 137-122.
Game Notes and stats: Curry was the man Sunday night. As mentioned earlier, Curry finished with a career-high 62 points. He took 31 shots and made 18. He was six for 12 from behind the three-point arc.
The one sour note was that he missed a free throw to end his team-record 80 consecutive free throws. Draymond Green, playing in his second game of the season, looked like the Draymond of old.
He did not score very much, he recorded only one point, but he had three rebounds and eight assists. Andrew Wiggins had 21 points, seven boards, and two assists. Kelly Oubre had, perhaps, his best game as a Warrior. Oubre had 17 points and five rebounds. He was a force on both ends of the floor to help the Warriors to the win. Eric Paschall had ten points and three rebounds. Wiseman 12 points and 11 boards.
Damian Lillard paced the Blazers with 32 points. He made six threes. C.J.McCollum finished with 28 points, nine rebounds, and five assists. The Warriors’ defense held Josef Nurkic in check. Nurkic had seven points and six rebounds. The Blazers’ backup center, Enes Kanter, played very well. He had a double-double with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Carmelo Anthony had 10.
With the win, the Warriors are 3-3 for the year. The Blazers drop to 3-3. The Warriors meet the Sacramento Kings at the Chase Center Monday night. The game will start at 7 pm.