Someone forgot to tell Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson that #SplashBrothers Night is actually NEXT game. The best shooting backcourt in the NBA put on a show Sunday night as the Warriors cruised to a 130-102 victory over the visiting Utah Jazz. Thompson led all scorers with 33 points, 21 of which came by way of his seven three-pointers. Curry was equally impressive, notching 31 points (including five treys) and tied a career-high with 16 assists. It’s the first time ever the #SplashBrothers have both scored 30 or more points in the same game. Andrew Bogut tallied six points and 11 rebounds in his return to action, while Jermaine O’Neal chipped in seven points and 10 rebounds off the bench. The victory pushes the Warriors record to 48-29 and lowers their magic number to clinch a playoff berth to three. The Dubs will look to keep the momentum rolling when they take on the visiting Denver Nuggets on Thursday on the real #SplashBrothers Night, filtered by Brita.
On tonight's game:
“Just great focus by my guys. Just a great job of understanding that there have been some games that we have lost here that we weren’t happy with. We talked about finishing the season the right way. These past few games have been a thing of beauty defensively, offensively, executing and unselfish basketball in spite of, whether we want to acknowledge it or not, all the chatter outside of the locker-room. These guys deserve a lot of credit for how focused they are and how tied together they are. You look around this league and every game matters. The way that it came our tonight and collectively did the It was awesome.”
On Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry:
“Those guys are special. Steph (Stephen Curry) is obviously a superstar basketball player that has put together an incredible year. Klay (Thompson) continues to develop with his ability now to put the ball on the floor and attack the paint area and play out the pick-and-rolls. He’s a nightmare to try and defend and the league will have to deal with him. Those two guys with the way they are playing and also what they can do on the defensive end-they set the tone. Tonight they got great looks and they made the offensive pay.”
On if the season high games over .500 mean more amidst all the "chatter":
“With all due respect, if you pay attention to the chatter then you lose sight of what is taking place. If there is great noise around here the chatter is irrelevant, the numbers speak for themselves. When you think about what this team and what this group of guys were able to do-give ownership credit, give management credit and give these players credit. I really don’t care. At the end of the day we are witnessing something that has not been done around her in a long time and that group of guys in there, I’m proud of them. We are not finished there is still work to be done. To think about where we were three years ago to where we are today, I’m not going to minimize it.”
On if the players use the "chatter" as motivation:
“I have a positive group. I don’t want to give too much credit to the chatter writers. These guys are consistent with who they are. I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t add something to it, I’m sure. If you go at my guys I will buckle up too. These guys are true professionals. Give ownership and management credit, these guys were selected and these group of guys were put together for a reason. They are great competitors and tied together.”
On Stephen Curry's competitive nature:
“The funny thing is that before the game I wasn’t even sure he was going to play. The guy was sick, drained. I didn’t even realize, even though people think we are dysfunctional, we don’t watch film with our hoodies on. Steph (Stephen Curry) was sitting next to me with his hoodie on his head and it didn’t cross my mind until afterwards somebody told me that he wasn’t feeling well. In the pregame meeting I asked him if he was fine and he said ‘I’ll see how it feels’. He was laid out on the training table. The guy is a professional and a great, great competitor with a tremendous edge to his game.”
On the game:
“We expected to play well. We came out pushing the tempo, got stops early and were able to get a nice lead. They made a little run to cut it to five in the second quarter but we responded well. Our offense was clicking and hitting shots, but for the rate we were scoring, we were playing pretty solid defense as well, and that was fueling our offense and getting us good looks on certain possessions. Great win, just need to take care of home court and get this nice three day break and get ready for Thursday.”
On the play of Klay Thompson:
“He’s getting his points all different ways; getting to the basket, knocking down open shots, playmaking. He’s also playing defense. He’s a great two-way player so he’s playing some good basketball right now.”
On the team's mentality to finish the season strong:
“Same mentality, same focus, same businesslike mindset; another home game to continue to play good basketball, to continue to play good basketball and work to finish the season strong. Hopefully we get some good rest over these next three days and we have four games in five nights so we’ve got to be ready.”
On the game:
“Our defense wasn’t outstanding tonight but our offense just kept clicking. When we can have both at the same time I think that’s when we play our best basketball, so hopefully we save it for the playoffs. I think the way we’ve been playing, been pushing the ball at bit more offensively. Defensively I think we weren’t that bad, they just got a lot of touchy fouls and free throws. I can’t remember what they shot from the line but it had to 30 or 40 free throws. Without that, they probably wouldn’t score 80.”
On the importance of winning a game like tonight:
“It’s very important. Utah is a team that not going to the playoffs but at the same time these teams sometimes have seven, eight, nine, 10, 11, 12 guys on the bench that are free agents and have something to play for still, to prove themselves. If they get hot you can be in some trouble so it’s always good to put them away early and get some rest for the starters.”
On the team's recent high level of play:
“Guys were in a really good rhythm. We’re in a good place right now; the confidence is there. We’ve just got to continue to play at a high level.”
On the key to the final stretch of games:
“Being in a good place on both ends kind of at the right time. We handled our business like we were supposed to the first two and we feel like we have two more where we have to try to do the same thing. We’re going to go against a team that plays really hard despite their record and we’ve got to be ready for that intensity.”
BACK FROM BREAK
The Warriors are back at home for the second consecutive game to face the Utah Jazz. Sunday’s matchup will be the fourth and final meeting between the two teams this season and the Warriors will be looking for their first-ever season sweep against the Jazz. The playoff race in the Western Conference is as close as it gets so the Dubs will have to come out fighting for a win if they want to hold onto their current sixth seed. A number of tickets are still available for the game, which falls on Jewish Heritage Night (each special event ticket purchased receives a commemorative Jewish Heritage Night Hat). BUY TICKETS
TRAFFIC AND PARKING ADVISORY
The Golden State Warriors and Oakland A’s will host concurrent home games at Oracle Arena and O.co Coliseum, respectively, on Sunday. Fans are encouraged to take BART to avoid traffic delays. Please allow an extra 30 to 45 minutes to get to the arena. Parking lots will open at 9:00 a.m. as the A’s-Mariners game begins at 1:05 p.m., and the Warriors-Jazz matchup starts at 6:00 p.m MORE INFORMATION
LAST TIME OUT
The Warriors completed a 4-0 season-series sweep against the Sacramento Kings on Friday night with a 102-69 win at Oracle Arena. The Warriors dominated in nearly every statistic, leading by as many as 42. Seven players scored in in double figures for Golden State with Klay Thompson leading the way with 21 points in 24 minutes. Draymond Green logged his third career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds to go with four assists, two steals and two blocks in his eighth start of the season, while Marreese Speights posted his first double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds off the bench. With the win, the Warriors have swept the Kings (4-0) for the first time since the 1991-92 season and have swept their Pacific Division home slate (8-0) for the first time in franchise history. The Warriors will now have one day off before hosting the Jazz on Sunday. GAME RECAP
NO TIME FOR LETTING UP
The Warriors are entering the last six games of the season and need to continue pushing to keep or move above their number sixth seeded playoff spot. The team has been known for playing down against lesser opponents and five of the next six games feature teams either at or below .500. The Dubs are at a current 47-29 record, just two games above Memphis and Phoenix who are fighting for a place in the playoffs. The Warriors need to buckle down and maintain their top five stellar defense (99.7 defensive rating- points allowed per 100 possessions), while still remaining efficient on the offensive end. The current magic number for the Dubs is four. If the Warriors can get to the No. 5 seed in the West there is greater chance of the team clinching the playoffs and a win over the Jazz is another way to get to that magical number.
All season long Stephen Curry has proved he’s more than just an average player in the league. The Jazz know this from experience, as he scored his season high 44 points against the team in the Warriors’ 95-90 victory in their previous late January meeting. In the contest Curry went 14-of-26 from the field and 8-of-13 from distance. Curry is among the top 10 players in points (23.6 PPG) and assists (8.4 APG) while averaging 46.6% from the field. He currently holds the longest active streak of hitting a three-pointer in 64-straight games, and will look to continue the streak and his excellence in Sunday’s meeting.
UTAH SCOUTING REPORT
Holding the worst record in the Western Conference, the Jazz are out of the playoff race for the 2013-14 season. Nonetheless, Utah is in rebuilding mode and although their record might not show it they certainly have some valuable players to work with. Gordon Hayward is the team’s leading scoring (16.1 PPG) and along with Rookie of the Year candidate Trey Burke they have solid pieces on the wing. Derrick Favors is holding down the center position averaging 12.9 PPG and 8.8 RPG in only his fourth season in the league. Richard Jefferson and Marvin Williams bring the veteran knowledge and skills to the young team contributing at the forward positions. The Jazz have six players averaging in double figures and the Warriors need to stay sound to maintain a threat in the Western Conference.
GSW: David Lee (strained right hamstring) is questionable. Andrew Bogut (pelvis/groin contusion) and Festus Ezeli (recovery from right knee surgery) are out. Nemanja Nedovic and Ogjnen Kuzmic are on assignment with the Santa Cruz Warriors of the D-League.
UTA: Andris Biedrins(left shoulder sprain) is out.
UTA: Andris Biedrins(left shoulder sprain) is out.