Curry, Warriors silence Jazz

By Joe Hawkes-Beamon

OAKLAND — Stephen Curry scored 11 of his game-high 24 points in the second quarter and Leandro Barbosa finished with a season-high 19 points helping Golden State pickup its 56th win of the season with a 106-91 win over the Utah Jazz Saturday night after disposing the New Orleans Pelicans at home Friday night.

The Warriors take the season series from Utah, 3-1.

Curry had his jump shot going, finishing with 8-of-18 from the floor (3-of-6 on 3s) to go along with three assists and three steals in 32 minutes of action. The Warriors’ league MVP candidate was struggling with his shot, shooting just 35 percent from the floor in five previous five games.

Barbosa, who has been huge for Golden State this season, played 28 minutes off the bench.

Draymond Green scored 15 points (11-of-13 from the free throw line), while Harrison Barnes chipped in with 12 points, and Andre Iguodala finished with 13 points off the bench for Golden State, who dominated Utah on fast break points, 25-6.

Justin Holiday, who has started the last three games in the place of All-Star shooting guard Klay Thompson, finished with just seven points.

“L.B. has been magnificent this season,” said Warriors head coach Steve Kerr. “His defense has been tremendous for us, he’s a worker, a wonderful teammate.”

“We’re a deep team,” said Curry. “It goes to show you what our record (56-13) is. Everyone is playing great and contributing to the team’s success.”

Andrew Bogut was aggressive in the paint tonight scoring eight of Golden State’s game high 46 points in the paints (Utah finished with 36 points in the paint), and played great defense against Jazz promising young center Rudy Gobert. Gobert finished with just five points and nine rebounds in 34 minutes.

“Bogut played a great game tonight,” Kerr said of Bogut, who finished with eight of Golden State’s 37 rebounds. “He was a rock in the paint for us, and that is what I’m looking from him every night.”

Derrick Favors finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds, and Trey Burke scored 20 points (5-of-11 on 3s) for the Jazz, who drop to 31-35 on the season.

Before Golden State dropped 106 points tonight, Utah didn’t allow 100 points in 12 consecutive games. Opponents were averaging just 86 points per game during that span.

Utah was 12-3 since the All-Star break, which was tops in the league.

Golden State continues to pile up wins at Oracle, improving to an NBA-best 33-2 in front of arguably the best homecourt advantage in all of basketball and are beating teams by an average of 15 points per game at home.

When holding teams to under 100 points, Golden State are a staggering 37-0.

With just three more wins, Golden State can tie the 1975-76 Warriors team for the most wins in franchise history with 59. The Warriors’ magic number to clinch the Pacific Division is down to two games.

The Warriors can finish their six-game homestand Monday 6-0 (and extend its current five-game winning streak) with a win over the visiting Washington Wizards.

Golden State will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the organization’s last championship that night, which was won against Wizards (formally the Bullets).

 

Warriors shake off slow start, sink Suns

By Joe Hawkes-Beamon

OAKLAND — Stephen Curry finished with 25 points and Klay Thompson scored 22 points to help the Golden State Warriors stop a two-game losing streak with a 106-87 win over the Phoenix Suns Saturday night at Oracle Arena.

“We got back to our style of basketball,” said Curry, who combined with Thompson shot 19-for-30 from the floor. “We we’re slumping a little bit and wasn’t playing well, so this was big for us.”

Harrison Barnes added 13 points and eight rebounds, Leandro Barbosa scored 14, and Andre Iguodala finished with 12 points for Golden State (37-8), who shook off a sluggish start where the missed their first 10 shots of the game.

Daymond Green fell one point short of a double-double, scoring nine points and grabbing 11 rebounds. During one timeout, Green was heard telling teammates, “we got to get our focus back and play better.”

Phoenix jumped out to a 40-28 lead midway through the second quarter, but rallied to close out the frame to take a 52-51 lead into halftime and never looked back.

After finding themselves down by 12 to Phoenix, Golden State outscored the Suns 78-47 the rest of the way that proved to be difference.

Golden State’s 15-2 run midway through the fourth quarter proved to be the difference for the Warriors, who got back into the win column.

“Great effort by our guys tonight,” said Warriors head coach Steve Kerr. “The defensive effort in the second half was tremendous. We closed out on the shooters, got into passing lanes, got back on track.”

Golden State shot 46 percent from the floor (40-for-87), while holding one of the NBA’s best scoring teams to well under their 100 points per game average and 36 percent shooting (33-for-91).

The Warriors had seven players with two or more assists led by Curry’s seven.

Phoenix did get the best of Golden State on the glass, outrebounding the Warriors 52-44.

“We have great passers on our team,” said Barbosa. “It helped the team and we were able to get the ball moving and played better tonight.”

Markieff Morris had 17 points and 11 rebounds and Eric Bledsoe finished with 16 points for Phoenix (28-21) just fell apart in the second half.

Goran Dragic scored 10 points and Isaiah Thomas added 13 points. Phoenix shot 35 percent on 3s (9-for-26).

The Warriors improved to 22-2 at Oracle Arena this season. With a 12-3 record in January, it was Golden State’s best January since the 1974-75 season.

Golden State heads up to Sacramento Tuesday to take on the Kings.