The Warriors put the finishing touches on a night of constant celebration, holding on in the final minutes to defeat the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder 108-100 on Opening Night on Tuesday. Golden State led for the entire first half and vast majority of the contest, but had to grind through the final minutes to ensure their 2018-19 regular season would begin with a victory. Stephen Curry was tremendous, scoring a game-high 32 points to go along with eight rebounds and nine assists. Kevin Durant added 27 points and eight boards, Damian Jones scored in double figures in his first career start, and Kevon Looney recorded a double-double off the bench.
The celebration began well before the opening tip, as the reigning NBA Champions received their 2018 Championship rings at a pregame ceremony. That ceremony concluded with the 2017-18 Championship banner being unveiled in the rafters of Oracle Arena.
Curry, who counted down to that unveiling, was clearly not distracted by the pregame festivities, as he was on his game from the minute the ball went up in the air. He provided the Warriors’ first points of the new season with a three-pointer 29 seconds into the contest, which would prove to be the first of his five treys on the night. He would go on to total 12 points in the opening quarter, which came to a close with Golden State leading 31-23.
The Dubs didn’t trail at any point in the first half, and built their largest lead of the entire game on Kevin Durant’s free throw with 3:04 remaining in the second quarter, which put Golden State in front 53-39. The Thunder would immediately respond with an 8-2 burst, however, before Curry closed out the scoring in the half with a layup to give the Warriors a 57-47 advantage at halftime.
Oklahoma City got off to a torrid start to the second half, opening the third quarter on a 20-9 run to take their first lead of the night at 67-66 just under four minutes into the frame. Dennis Schröder would convert a pull-up jumper with 6:19 remaining to put the Thunder up 71-70, but that would prove to be Oklahoma City’s final lead of the night. Klay Thompson sank a jumper on the ensuing possession, followed by Curry’s fifth and final three-pointer of the game, and Golden State never looked back.
The Thunder tied the game on two occasions early in the fourth quarter, but Durant’s free throws with 9:12 left put the Warriors in front for good. Oklahoma City gave Golden State one final scare, as Steven Adams’ free throw with 1:57 remaining cut the deficit to 99-97, but the Dubs would go on to outscore the Thunder 9-3 over the final two minutes to close out the eventual 108-100 victory.
With the win, Golden State improves to 1-0. They’ll attempt to make it two victories in a row to begin the season when they travel to Utah to take on the Jazz on Friday night.