Warriors cruise past Clippers 121-104 in Game 1; Curry passes Allen for most career threes

Photo credit: @warriors

By: Ana Kieu

The Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Clippers kicked off their first-round series. Game 1 was at Oracle Arena on Saturday night.

The Warriors’ starters were Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and DeMarcus Cousins.

The Oracle was Roaracle due to the loud cheers and chants from Dub Nation. The game went underway and Cousins scored the first bucket of the NBA playoffs at the 10:45 mark of the first quarter after trailing 3-0 at first. Durant dropped back-to-back dimes with 8:45 left in the first. Cousins continued shooting his shots and then Green contributed his shots. Green was a perfect 5-5 in field goals. The Warriors led 36-27 at the end of the first.

The Warriors turned offense into art in the second quarter. Curry played beautiful basketball. Durant scored a bucket, and with that bucket, Durant (3,665) passed Dirk Nowitzki (3,663) for 15th place on the NBA all-time career playoffs points scored list. Check out the bucket below.

Andre Iguodala threw it down late in the second, and the Warriors took a 69-56 lead to the locker room at halftime.
The Warriors gave a shoutout to Kaiser Permamente for providing Dub Nation with customized Gold and Royal Blue playoff shirts.

The Warriors returned to action in the third quarter. Curry got the crowd pumping with his three-pointers, some of which were long distance threes. Aside from Curry, who passed Ray Allen for most career threes, the Warriors turned defense into offense as Iguodala forced a turnover and threw down a dunk that could’ve broke the rim.

Curry proceeded to shoot threes in the fourth quarter, and the Warriors blew out the Clippers 121-104 for a 1-0 series lead. The Clippers are down 0-1.

Curry led the Warriors with 38 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists and one block. Durant had 23 points, four rebounds, three assists, three blocks and one steal. Draymond Green had 17 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, one block and one steal. Klay Thompson had 12 points, two assists, two blocks, one rebound and one steal. DeMarcus Cousins had nine points, nine rebounds, four assists and one steal. Andre Iguodala had eight points, seven rebounds, six assists, three blocks and two steals. Kevon Looney had six points, five rebounds, two steals, one assist and one block. Andrew Bogut had three points, one rebound, one assist and one block. Alfonzo McKinnie had three points and one block. Quinn Cook had two points, one rebounds and one steal.

The Warriors and Clippers face off in Game 2 on Monday night at 7:30 pm PT. The game will be broadcast on NSBA, TNT and FSPT.

NBA podcast with Jerry Feitelberg: Pistons’ Griffin and Drummond lead the way in win; Magic get seven-point win over Pacers; plus more

Photo credit: @ESPNStatsInfo

On the NBA podcast with Jerry Feitelberg:

#1 The Detroit Pistons beat Mark Cuban and the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday night 93-89. The Pistons’ Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond both scored 24 points in the win.

#2 The Orlando Magic got a seven-point win past the Indiana Pacers 107-100 in Orlando on Thursday night. The Magic’s Terrence Ross led the way with 30 points.

#3 The Milwaukee Bucks got by a tough Toronto Raptors team. Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks in scoring with 19 points in the 105-92 win in Toronto on Thursday night.

#4 The Philadelphia 76ers got past the Golden State Warriors 113-104 in Oakland on Thursday night. The Sixers Joel Emiid led with 26 points. The win for the Sixers snapped Golden State’s 11 game win streak.

#5 The Lakers and Clippers went down to the wire in LA and into overtime on Thursday night. The Lakers outlasted the Clippers 123-120 in OT. LeBron James had 24 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists in his return to action.

Jerry Feitelberg does the NBA podcast each week for http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Warriors send Rockets packing in dominating fashion

by Michael Martinez

picture credit CBS 46 Atlanta

Well, Steph Curry did not play and yet the Warriors showed why they made history for the best record in NBA history. Normally, a team without their star player has a lot to worry about. The Warriors showed no problems minus the reigning MVP and proved why they are the team to beat besides the fact their last year’s champs. Golden State annihilated the Houston Rockets in a 114-81 victory at Oracle Arena.

Let’s be honest, there’s not much to say about this game. The game went exactly as most would have figured given that the Warriors routed Houston in game four and not to mention they’re the Golden State Warriors.

The Warriors played great, the Rockets played atrociously, which is a recipe for disaster. The Warriors played with great togetherness and to nobody’s surprise, they shot out of this world. Golden State made it look easy as they finished with a 54.9 shooting percentage while Houston could not find a way to score with a 32.6 shooting percentage. Golden State played solid defense as they forced 18 turnovers for 25 points.

James Harden was the only Rockets’ player to show any offensive life finishing with 35 points. Besides Harden, Michael Beasley was the only other Houston player to finish the game in double figures.

Klay Thompson did his best to fill Curry’s shoes and finished with 27 points. Thompson knocked down seven buckets from behind the arc on 11 shots and finished 10 of 14 from the field overall. Draymond Green was tremendous overall as usual and totaled 15 points, grabbed nine boards and dropped eight dimes.

Shaun Livingston had a good game on offense as well and scored 16 points on seven of eight shooting. The Warriors looked just as good as they always are and bounced the Rockets out of the playoffs.

Throughout the game, Curry showed incredible excitement from the bench and supported his teammates like no other. And this is why the Warriors are so dangerous, they have some of the greatest team chemistry I have witnessed in my lifetime.

The Warriors won the series and only allowed the Rockets to win one game, which came down to the wire.

Golden State will either face the Los Angeles Clippers who are without Chris Paul and Blake Griffin or the Portland Trailblazers. Portland won game five in their series to go up 3-2 and it appears like they will be Golden State’s semifinal opponent.

Whoever the Warriors play, fans are hopeful that Curry can make his way back into the playoffs. But, with the way Golden State played tonight, let Curry take as much time as he needs to get ready for the Western Conference Finals. I am knocking on wood though, so the whole Bay Area doesn’t freak out on me and say I jinxed them.


DMC and Gay lead Kings to victory, 103-101, over Jazz

by Michael Martinez

Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Image

SACRAMENTO- Heading into Thursday night’s game the Sacramento Kings were 2 games back behind their opponent, the Utah Jazz. Sacramento, 5-12 on the road, looked to come back from a bad loss the night before against the Pelicans. The Kings found a way to hold their opponent to a low shooting percentage, at least for three quarters, with tough perimeter defense while getting the ball inside to DeMarcus Cousins who had a tremendous game. The Kings shot the ball well and were able to just hold on to pick up the win against the Jazz, 103-101, at Vivint Smart Home Arena.

As the game got underway the Kings looked like the better team all the way. The team’s defense was tremendous and Utah could not make any shots. Willie Cauley-Stein got off to a great start putting up six quick points while playing tremendous defense. Cauley-Stein’s quickness as a big man has benefitted the Kings and his hustle does not go unnoticed.

Cousins did not do a ton of scoring in the first quarter, six points, but did a good job of moving the ball around for his teammates while picking up eight early rebounds. The Kings shot the ball well, while holding the Jazz to a 16.7% shooting percentage. The Kings did a great job of continuing their run as Utah went about eight minutes without a field goal. Gordon Hayward bricked a lot of shots and found a couple buckets at the charity stripe. Sacramento held the Jazz to 12 points, the lowest of any Kings’ opponent this season, giving them a 1st quarter lead 26-12.

The Jazz looked to have a better second quarter, but the Kings held them in check again. In full, Utah went nine minutes and 19 seconds without a field goal before Trevor Booker got a put back dunk for a field goal. After struggling all season with perimeter defense, the Kings were much improved in the first half, although there were a lot of fouls, 17 in the first two quarters for the Kings. The quarter consisted of a lot of free throws, 12-18 for Sacramento, and 9-13 for the Jazz.

Boogie came out stronger in the second quarter, totaling 18 points and 13 rebounds in the half, his sixth consecutive double-double. With DMC’s scoring ability the Kings were able to hang on to the lead although the Jazz outscored them 33-30 after shooting the ball much better. Trey Lyles and Raul Neto totaled 10 points for a team high as the Kings held the lead 56-45 heading into the locker room on 54.3% shooting. Utah shot 1/16 from 3 point range, much improved for Sacramento’s perimeter defense. The Kings scored a field goal with 1.6 seconds on the clock as Rajon Rondo passed the ball all the way up court to Darren Collison who missed the lay-up but Boogie cleaned it up with a dunk as the red lights lit up the backboard.

After the half time break, Hayward finally made a field goal after going 0-9. Cousins answered right back with his tremendous scoring ability. Rondo kept showing off his vision and passing ability with a pass on a very tight window to Rudy Gay for an alley-oop. Cousins continued his scoring ability with his first three pointer in the ball game in the third quarter. And Rondo once again got Gay the ball for another alley-oop later in the quarter. Both teams shot well and both Gay and Cousins showed off their scoring abilities. Gay scored eight in the quarter while Cousins scored 10, both shooting 3-5 from the field. The Kings got to the line 10 times and converted eight free throws. Hayward had a much better quarter, scoring nine points on 3-6 shooting.

Cousins produced the game high in three quarters with 28 points and Gay had 16 for the second highest point total. The Kings shot the ball well once again with a 54% percentage through three quarters, which is something they have done well all season. Through three quarters the Kings totaled 42 points in the paint and got the ball inside to Boogie a lot. Boogie has scored 15.7 points in the paint per game in the month of January as the Kings continue to dominate their opponents close to the rim. Their dominance allowed them to hang on to the lead although Hayward hit a buzzer beater heading into the fourth. Sacramento led the Jazz 82-71 with 12 minutes remaining.

To open up the final quarter, Omri Casspi knocked down a three pointer, something he has done well all season. Down 85-71 the Jazz found a rhythm and went on a 9-0 run in a minute and 50 seconds. The run consisted of a Casspi foul and technical, which gave Utah three easy points as Trey Burke connected on the free throw. Cauley-Stein stopped the bleeding with a put back dunk, but Utah kept hanging around. Gay struggled from three but Cousins was able to hit a big 3 pointer of his own to put the Kings back up by 10. Utah maintained a way to stick around with the Kings who could not find a way to put the Jazz out.

With two minutes and 55 seconds left the Kings held a six point lead over the Jazz and Cauley-Stein helped maintain that lead with a big rejection, showing off his athletic ability. But Gay fouled Rodney Hood behind the arc, which led to three shots from the charity stripe. Hood connected on all three cutting the lead to five. The Kings started to struggle and went three minutes and 16 seconds without a make but Cousins then proceeded to score. Rondo fouled Burke, which set up a three point play as the Jazz kept scrapping.

As time wound down, Hood hit a second chance three pointer to cut the lead to five one again. With 33 seconds left, Gay got to the foul line and made one of the two free throws. In just under four seconds, Hayward took the ball down the court, got fouled and made a circus shot to get the and one. Hayward made the bucket and forced the Kings to called a timeout, up 101-98 with 29.2 seconds remaining.

Out of the time out, Rondo took the shot and missed it, as the Jazz gained possession with 8.5 seconds remaining. Utah’s Joe Ingles took the three point shot and made it to tie the game at 101. Sacramento took a 20 second time out with 4.8 seconds remaining and drew up a play for Gay who scored well all night. Gay got the ball and hit a mid-range jumped that was good with 0.6 seconds left. Utah heaved up a miracle shot that had no chance and the Kings picked up a rare victory on back to back games especially on the road. The final score, 103-101, as the Kings just barely pulled out a W.

Amongst rumors of a proposed trade for Pelican’s forward, Ryan Anderson, Gay played an awesome game. Number eight finished the night with 24 points, 9-17 from the field, adding nine rebounds and three steals while knocking down the game winner.

DMC was once again unstoppable, finished with 36 points, 10-21 shooting, and adding 14 free throws on 21 attempts. Boogie also added 17 boards. Cousins has led the NBA in points in the month of January with 32.3 points per game. Cousins showed off his scoring ability once again with his inside dominance as Utah had no big man to cover him with Derrick Favors out. And Rondo continued to dish the ball out adding 13 assists, while adding 6 points and 6 rebounds.

Overall, Sacramento got careless with the ball, 16 turnovers but still shot well. Their defense looked good for three quarters but really let up towards the end although they were much improved. The team also dominated the rebounding category, 54-38. Cauley-Stein was a great spark for the Kings who looked better tonight as they continued to chase the Jazz for the eight seed.

On Saturday, the Kings will take on the Clippers in Los Angeles and will need Cousins to continue his hot start in the new year. The whole Kings crew is going to have to come together as the team is finally healthy and looks to beat a team in their conference and division. The Kings have struggled against really good teams so Saturday night will be a big test.

All-Star Snub Lee States Case As Warriors Dismantle Division-Leading Clippers

By Matthew Harrington

Coach Mark Jackson accused his Golden State Warriors of playing down to their opponents amidst a stretch that has seen the Warriors drop six of their last nine, a cold streak that reached its lowest point with a Tuesday night 88-85 loss at home to the lowly Washington Wizards. His team played to the level of its opponent against Thursday night. Luckily for Jackson, the team on the opponents’ bench happened to be one of the best of the West. The Warriors (28-19) rebounded from Tuesday’s embarrassment in a big way, thumping the Pacific Division-leading Los Angeles Clippers 111-92 at Oracle Arena in a game where the outcome practically never came under doubt.

The Dubs big men manhandled their Southern California foes, with David Lee and Andrew Bogut combining for 36 points and 28 rebounds for their second-straight win over in-state rivals Los Angeles (33-16). The Warriors also downed the Clippers on Christmas day in a more physical 105-103 win and lead the season series 2-1.

Lee, making a statement after being overlooked for a reserve role on the Western Conference All-Star squad after spots were announced Thursday, tied Stephen Curry for a Warriors-best 22 points on the night and chipped in 11 boards for the double-double. Bogut connected on seven of eleven field goal attempts for 14 points, including a nifty desperation chuck with the shot clock expiring that drew a smile from the Aussie center, and pulled down 17 rebounds. His 17 boards were second only to Clippers center DeAndre Jordan who reeled 20 down off the rim. All-world talent Blake Griffin ended the contest with 27 points for Los Angeles to lead all scorers. Guard Darren Collison netted 22 starting in place of All-Star Chris Paul, out with a shoulder injury since January 3rd but expected to return as early as next week.

The Warriors raced out to an early 17-6 lead just under halfway through the first quarter then held the 11-point edge leading 32-21 to close the quarter. The home team continued to add to the lead in the second before the Clippers put together their best run off the night in the final five minutes of the half. Trailing Golden State 56-40, L.A. closed out the period outscoring the Warriors 16-8 to trail 64-56. The Clippers comeback ended prematurely with the Warriors smothering their visitors 26-11 then closed out the game despite being outscored 25-21 in the fourth quarter for the 111-92 final margin.

The win came at a desperate time for the Warriors, who were in danger of dropping back six games in the standings to the Clippers. The Dubs stand four games back in third place in the division after being leapfrogged by the red-hot Phoenix Suns, winners of four-straight and seven of their last ten. The Warriors have a prime opportunity to string together consecutive wins for the first time since their historic ten-game win-streak was snapped earlier in the month when they face the Utah Jazz, who boast the second-least wins in the Western Conference (16) Friday night in the second half of back-to-back games. For coach Jackson, the hope is that the Warriors can right a spin that has seen the Dubs go 4-6 over their last ten while playing above the level of their opponents, the Northeast Division’s last place Jazz.

Kings Fall to Clippers 110-101


By Charlie O. Mallonee

The LA Clippers came to call on the Sacramento Kings Friday night. It would have seemed to be perfect timing as the Clippers had a home game on Thursday and then had to face a road game the next night. The timing did not work out for the Kings as the Clippers came out shooting at 50.0% from the field and won the game 110-101.

The Clippers came out in the first period looking like a team that was coming off a day of rest rather than playing game two of a back-to-back. The Clippers outscored the Kings 24-22. The Kings shooting left something to be desired as they shot just 38.1% from the field. Isaiah Thomas came off the bench to spark the Kings and keep the game close.

The Clippers started off the second quarter with a 9-0 run over the Kings. Just when it looked like the Clips would run away with the period, Isaiah Thomas brought the Kings back to life, but the Kings poor shooting allowed the Clippers to open up a 10 point lead. The Kings brought the game back into the paint and cut the LA lead to three with 4:26 remaining in the quarter. The Clippers used an improved shooting percentage (47.5%) to open up a 54-45 halftime lead.

The Kings shot just 38.1% (16-42) from the field in the first half. Isaiah Thomas led the Kings with 12 points.

The Clippers started off the second half much as they did the first half. Chris Paul put LAC on the board with back-to-back jumpers and strong shooting from the field (51.1%) kept the Clippers on top opening up a lead of 13 at the 7:41 mark. Following a three point play by DeMarcus Cousins, the Kings came back to life cutting the Clippers lead to 68-60 at 5:38. Isaiah Thomas came off the bench at 4:35 and sparked a charge that cut the LA lead to two with 1:25 to play in the quarter. A Travis Outlaw put back of a Cousins shot at the buzzer made it LAC 79 – Kings 77 after three periods.

A Jason Thompson field goal opened the final period tying the game at 79-79. The quarter quickly became a game of outside shooting and free throws. The Clippers would threaten to pull away and then the Kings would find an answer to keep the game close. Sacramento tied the game at 90 with a circus shot from Isaiah Thomas. The Kings took the lead at 6:43 on a Jason Thompson lay-up, but the hot LA shooting kept putting the Clippers back into the lead. DeMarcus Cousins picked up a technical foul at the 2:48 mark and gave LA a three point lead.  The game remained close, but in the end the Kings could not overcome the Clippers 50.0% shooting from the field. The LA Clippers won the game 110—101.

The Kings fell to 1-1 on the young season. They now face their first road contest of the year in Oakland versus the Warriors on Saturday night.

Isaiah Thomas led all scorers with 29 points. DeMarcus Cousins added 24 and Marcus Thornton put up 17 for Sacramento. Chris Paul led the Clippers with 26 points. Blake Griffin posted 20 along with Jamal Crawford’s 18.

The key to the Clippers win was their shooting percentage. When a team shoots 50.0% (35-70) from the field and shoots 50.0% (12-24) from 3 point range, it becomes almost impossible to defeat them. The Clippers could not be defeated on Friday night.

Notes: The Kings on Thursday declined to pick their option on Jimmer Fredette for the 2014-15 season. The move will make the former first-round draft pick an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year. Fredette will be free to negotiate with any NBA team including the Kings for next season. The move may also mean that Fredette will not finish the season in Sacramento as his now expiring contract becomes a desirable piece in possible trades with teams looking to free up salary cap room. Fredette did not play in the season opener versus Denver… The Kings had two additional players that were eligible for deals on Thursday, Greivis Vasquez and Patrick Patterson. The team declined to offer either player an extension, but Kings can make both players restricted free agents at the end of the season … The Kings travel to the Bay Area on Saturday night to play the Golden State Warriors for the first time in the regular season. The Warriors will make their first appearance in Sacramento on Sunday 12/1 … The Kings won the season series versus the Warriors in 2012-13 3-1 … Because of the many connections between Sacramento and Golden State, the Kings are anxious to eliminate the references to “golden state light” that some have made about the team.