Golden State Warriors beat the San Antonio Spurs 112-101 Thursday night to register their 70th win of the season from 79 games. Stephen Curry’s team need to win all three of their remaining games – two against Memphis and a road game against Spurs – to supersede the 1995-1996 Chicago Bulls as the greatest regular season team in history.
Curry led the Warriors with 27 points (11-19 FG, 3-7 3pt), 9 assists, 5 rebounds and 2 steals, while Draymond Green stuffed the stat sheet with 18 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds and a steal. Harrison Barnes enjoyed one of the best games of his otherwise average season, tallying 21 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists from 33 minutes. Klay Thompson added another 14 points.
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It was a great bounce back victory for the Warriors, who suffered an embarrassing home defeat to Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday. They will now play back-to-back away games against Memphis (Saturday night) and San Antonio (Sunday night) before returning home for the season-finale against the Grizzlies on April 13. If they can escape the road trip with two victories, they will equal Michael Jordan’s 1995-1996 Bulls with 72 victories.
Typical Warriors, uncharacteristic Spurs…
Even though the Spurs fielded their regular starting 5, they didn’t play with the same defensive ferocity that has been put on display for the entirety of the season. Spurs conceded 57 points in the second half after giving up 52 points in the first half. Typically, Gregg Popovich’s team – the best defensive unit in the league – has kept sides to just under 93 points per game for the season.
Though the Spurs comfortably beat the Warriors in a home game last month, they have been outscored by 41 points in the last two away losses to Golden State. This is a very important fact to acknowledge, considering that the teams are likely to square off in the Western Conference Finals. Perhaps, the home advantage would help Warriors go the distance and make the Finals.
Kawhi Leonard, the only Spurs starter to play over 30 minutes, finished with 23 points and 3 rebounds. The Spurs desperately missed Boris Diaw, who was a crucial piece during the previous win over Warriors. While Tim Duncan had just 4 points and 3 rebounds from 19 minutes, LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 11 points and 3 rebounds.