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Game Preview: Warriors at Trail Blazers - 3/9/18

BACK TO BACK
The Warriors play the back end of a back-to-back on Friday night in Portland. This season’s third and final matchup between the two teams will serve as a rubber match, as each team protected their home court in previous head-to-head matchups this season. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m., and the game will be televised on NBC Sports Bay Area with the radio broadcast on 95.7 The Game, the Warriors Mobile App and the Warriors Radio Network.

LAST TIME OUT
Kevin Durant scored 14-straight Warriors points in the fourth quarter as the Dubs recovered from an eight-point deficit over the final four and a half minutes of Thursday’s 110-107 win over the Spurs. Full Recap


MATCHUP AT A GLANCE

GSW POR
51-14 39-26
2nd in West 3rd in West
PTS: 116 (1st) PTS: 105.3 (17th)
REB: 44 (13th) REB: 45.2 (3rd)
AST: 30.5 (1st) AST: 19.1 (30th)

LAST GAME'S STARTERS
GSW: Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and JaVale McGee
POR: Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Evan Turner, Al-Farouq Aminu and Jusuf Nurkic

INJURY & ROSTER NOTES
GSW: David West (right arm cyst), Andre Iguodala (left wrist sprain), Jordan Bell (right ankle sprain), Patrick McCaw (non-displaced fracture, left wrist) all missed last night’s game vs. San Antonio. Stephen Curry (right ankle) is out. Team Notes
POR: Maurice Harkless (left knee) is probable. Team Notes

WINNING COMBINATION
The Warriors are 7-0 since the All-Star break, and center JaVale McGee has started each and every one of those games. The athletic big man has shot below 50 percent just once in those seven games, and he has played exceptionally well over the Dubs’ last two games. On Thursday, he tallied four blocks while throwing down multiple dunks for 13 points. On the season, the Warriors are 11-0 in McGee starts. If the team keeps winning with McGee continuing to make a positive impact, then it will be hard for Coach Kerr to remove him from the starting five.

TEAM LEADERS

GSW POR
PTS: Curry (26.3) PTS: Lillard (26.8)
REB: Green (7.8) REB: Nurkic (8.4)
AST: Green (7.5) AST: Lillard (6.4)

PORTLAND SCOUTING REPORT
Winners of eight straight games, the Trail Blazers are currently in third place in the Western Conference, yet only four games separate them from 10th place. With such a traffic jam in the standings, the Trail Blazers couldn’t have picked a better time of the season to get hot. At home, the Trail Blazers are especially dangerous, having won 14 of their last 15 games at the Moda Center. Oakland native Damian Lillard has been on a tear as of late, and it was less than a month ago in which he dropped 44 points on the Dubs. His backcourt-mate CJ McCollum is also enjoying a fine season – he dropped 50 points in a game earlier this season – and the addition of Shabazz Napier provides another guard with firepower. As dangerous as they are offensively, Portland has been a standout defensive club as well. In fact, their defensive rating of 97.4 (points allowed per 100 possessions) during their winning streak is the second best in the NBA during that timeframe.

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