Klay Thompson on Curry: ‘I’m witnessing greatness’

Scott Bair

OAKLAND — Stephen Curry came off a double screen inching closer to the 3-point line, but still well beyond it. The Warriors point guard still couldn’t find open space.

New Orleans Pelicans big man Anthony Davis came bearing down, with a long arm aimed to disrupt his shooting motion.

That sure seemed like a low percentage shot. Not for Steph. Not during a torrid third quarter where he simply couldn’t miss.

If that was a heat check, it proved Curry was still scalding. Jaws dropped when that one went through, as part of a surge that lifted the Warriors to a 147-140 win over the Pelicans at Oracle Arena.

Curry had 41 points on the night, with 23 in a third quarter where he went 7-of-8 from beyond the arc.

Many of those were fantasy shots for most. They are practiced, often coreographed and at times perfected by the NBA’s finest distance shooter.

“Sometimes, when you get hot like that, you can’t see anything but the rim,” Curry said. “You just try to stay on balance and get to your spot, wherever that is. Again, these are shots I work on. I have confidence in them. I know my teammates do.”

Kevin Durant’s a rare talent in his own right, and even he has to stop and applaud.

“He’s a once-in-a-generation, once-in-a-lifetime talent, and his movements are so smooth that he makes it look so easy,” Durant said, after scoring 30 points of his own. “When he’s knocking down those shots, it’s just a joy to see.”

Curry was virtually unstoppable in the second half, securing his sixth 40-point game of the season by hitting 11-of-22 shots, including 9-of-17 from three-point range.

The Warriors matched a franchise record with 24 three-pointers made on a franchise record 49 attempts. They’ve ramped up their 3-point efforts lately, something opposing teams have done while trying to beat Golden State in a season that has featured more close games then usual for the defending champs.

[RELATED: Warriors, Pelicans break Golden State’s own 3-point record]

Head coach Steve Kerr cited No. 30 being healthy again for this 3-point surge.

“Steph just changes the whole equation,” Kerr said. “It really does come down to Steph being back, because the tempo goes back up. He shot 17 threes tonight. That’s the difference. He’s going to get a ton of them up.”

Some of them are standard, open shots taken close to the 3-point line. Others, however, would seem wacky taken by most everyone else.

Curry going on crazy runs is commonplace around these parts, but even other sharpshooters still marvel at his shots and their at-times shocking degree of difficulty.

“It’s incredible,” fellow guard Klay Thompson said. “Pull up off the dribble from 30-plus feet — it’s insane. I’m witnessing greatness.”

https://www.nbcsports.com/bayarea/warriors/warriors-witnessing-greatness-steph-curry-goes-beat-pelicans

Stephen Curry makes history with three-game 3-point run

Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer

OAKLAND, Calif. — Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Currybecame the first player in NBA history to knock down eight or more 3-pointers in three straight games, hitting nine in Wednesday night’s 147-140 win over the New Orleans Pelicans.

“When Mark Jackson said [Curry] was ruining the game, I know a lot of people took that personal,” Warriors All-Star forward Kevin Durant said. “But I kind of got it a little bit, because he’s the only person I’ve ever seen that can shoot those shots in rhythm like that and make them. And now everybody else think they can, and you can’t. And that’s why I shake my head, because once in a generation, once in a lifetime type of talent and movement. His movements out there are just so smooth, it makes it look so easy. So when he’s knocking down those shots it’s just a joy to see.”

Curry, who finished with 41 points, started slowly while picking up three early fouls, but he came to life in the third quarter, going off for 23 points and hitting seven of his eight 3-point attempts, many from far beyond the arc. When told of Curry’s accomplishment, Warriors coach Steve Kerr was surprised another MVP hadn’t done it first.

James Harden didn’t do that?” Kerr said. “He did everything else.”

Like everyone else around the league, Kerr marvels at the shots Curry is able to knock down each night.

“I can’t say that nothing he does surprises me anymore, because tonight, that might have been the most unbelievable stretch,” Kerr said. “In terms of the difficulty of the shots. I’ve seen him get hot obviously a million times. I’m looking forward to watching the tape, because it seemed like … it looked to me like they were all about six, eight feet beyond the 3-point line with a guy [who had] a hand in his face. It’s insane what he does.”

All of Curry’s attempts were contested Thursday night as he finished 9-of-17 from 3-point land, the most contested makes and attempts he has had all season, according to ESPN Stats & Information. His seven consecutive 3-pointers in the third quarter tied for the most consecutive 3s he has made in a game, according to Elias Sports Bureau. It’s a feat he has accomplished two other times in his career.

While the rest of his teammates and coaches just shake their heads at Curry’s brilliance, the proud guard doesn’t seem surprised by his success, given how much work he puts in on a daily basis.

“Sometimes when you get hot like that, you really don’t see anything but the rim,” Curry said of his third-quarter performance. “And you just try to stay on balance and get to your spot wherever that is. These are shots I work on. I have confidence in them. I know my teammates do.”

Read more…

http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/25783485/stephen-curry-golden-state-warriors-makes-history-3-point-run

NBA GAMEDAY POST JANUARY 16th 2019

James Harden has 58 points in Rockets’ OT loss to Nets

  • Associated Press

HOUSTON — Spencer Dinwiddie scored 25 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter andovertime and the Brooklyn Nets spoiled James Harden‘s 58-point night with a 145-142 victory over the Houston Rockets on Wednesday.

Harden had his second straight season high after scoring 57 in a victory over Memphis on Monday night, but was only 5 of 19 from 3-point range. The Rockets shot an NBA-record 70 3s, making just 23.

Harden has scored at least 30 points in 18 straight games and has reached 40 in nine of the last 12. He was 16 of 34 overall from the field, made 21 of 23 free throws and had 10 rebounds and six assists.

Dinwiddie forced overtime, making three 3-pointers in the last 30 seconds of regulation. In the extra period, he hit the go-ahead basket with 28 seconds left.

Houston had a chance to tie it at the buzzer, but Gerald Green‘s shot clanged off the rim. After Houston blew an 11-point lead, Harden’s 3-point attempt bounced off the rim to send it to overtime.

The Rockets broke their own record for 3-point attempts after shooting 61 against New Orleans on Dec. 16, 2016. Houston also holds the record for most 3-pointers made after hitting 26 in a win over Washington this season. Green, who did not attempt a 2-point basket, made 5 of 15.

WARRIORS 147, PELICANS 104

OAKLAND, Calif. — Stephen Curry scored 41 points with nine 3-pointers to become the first player in NBA history to make eight or more 3s in three straight games, and the Warriors held off the Pelicans for their sixth straight win.

Pelicans star Anthony Davis went down hard beneath the Warriors basket with 2:22 left but was able to walk off after a few minutes and quickly returned. Davis had 30 points, 18 rebounds, seven assists and three blocks in nearly 41 minutes for New Orleans, coming off a 46-point and 16-rebound gem Monday night despite starting 0 for 5 with just four points in the first quarter. Nikola Mirotic scored 29 points, Jrue Holiday added 25 points and seven assists while Elfrid Payton dished out 12 assists.

The Pelicans and Warriors combined for an NBA-record 43 3s, breaking the mark by two that Sacramento and Golden State accomplished Jan. 5 at Golden 1 Center.

CELTICS 117, RAPTORS 108

BOSTON — Kyrie Irving hit a foul-line fadeaway to give Boston the lead, then made a 31-foot 3-pointer to finish with 27 points and lead the Celtics past Toronto.

Returning after missing the last game with a bruised right leg, Irving had 10 points and six of his career-high 18 assist in the fourth quarter — including passes to set up Boston’s last three baskets in a game-ending 17-4 run. Al Horford scored 24 points to help Boston rebound from three straight road losses.

Kawhi Leonard scored 33 points, and Serge Ibaka had 22 points and 10 rebounds for the Raptors.

SPURS 105, MAVERICKS 101

DALLAS — Davis Bertans hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:41 left and San Antonio overcame a 19-point first-half deficit to beat Dallas.

Bertans finished with 12 points. Marco Belinelli led the Spurs with 17.

Luka Doncic led Dallas with 25 points, adding eight rebounds and eight assists. He’s the first rookie since Stephen Curry in 2010 to score 25 or more points in five straight games.

BUCKS 111, GRIZZLIES 101

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 27 points and 11 rebounds and Milwaukee had a 19-0 third-quarter run to beat Memphis.

Eric Bledsoe added 16 points to help the Bucks to their third straight victory and 14th in 17 games. Omri Casspi led Memphis with 17 points. The Grizzlies have lost nine of 10 games.

PISTONS 120, MAGIC 115, OT

DETROIT — Blake Griffin scored 30 points and Andre Drummondadded 14 points and 21 rebounds to help Detroit outlast Orlando in overtime.

The Pistons won for the third time in 11 games.

Nikola Vucevic and Terrence Ross each scored 24 points for Orlando.

TRAIL BLAZERS 129, CAVALIERS 112

PORTLAND, Ore. — Jusuf Nurkic had 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for his first career triple-double and Portland topped Cleveland.

Damian Lillard had 33 points to lead all scorers, and CJ McCollumhad 19 points as Portland snapped a two-game losing streak. Nurkic added five blocks and was treated to a standing ovation when he left the game with 2:13 left.

Jordan Clarkson had 22 points off the bench for the Cavaliers, who were coming off a 101-95 victory over the Lakers that snapped a 12-game losing streak. The game against the Blazers was the fourth of a six-game trip for the Cavs.

The teams combined for just seven turnovers, the fewest since turnovers were officially compiled starting in the 1970-71 season. Portland had a season-low four and Cleveland had three.

JAZZ 129, CLIPPERS 109

LOS ANGELES — Donovan Mitchell scored 28 points and Utah defeated Los Angeles for its first five-game winning streak of the season.

Jae Crowder added 23 points, Rudy Gobert had 23 points and 22 rebounds and Kyle Korver had 19 points for the Jazz, who had six players in double figures.

The Jazz made 30 of 37 free throws, while the Clippers were 9 of 14.

Lou Williams finished with 23 points off the bench to lead the Clippers, who have lost four straight for the second time this season. Tobias Harris added 17 points and Avery Bradley 15 points.

DeMarcus Cousins calls Warriors ‘the most hated team in sports’

By Dalton JohnsonJ

https://www.nbcsports.com/bayarea/warriors/demarcus-cousins-calls-warriors-most-hated-team-sports

If the Warriors became the “Super Villains” when Kevin Durant joined them in 2016, we need a new name with DeMarcus Cousins on the squad. 

Before he makes his highly-anticipated Warriors debut — set for Friday against the Clippers in Los Angeles — Cousins is all in on the envy. 

“We’re the most hated team in sports,” Cousins said Wednesday to ESPN. “They hate Kevin, they hate me. They only guy they really like is Steph. They may hate him as well. They hate Draymond. I mean, it is what it is. I can’t worry about that.” 

Cousins tore his Achilles tendon as a member of the Pelicans on Jan. 26, 2018 while in the midst one of the best seasons of his career. Nearly one year later, the four-time All-Star is ready to prove he’s still one of the top players in the NBA. 

“I’m back and I’m not looking back,” Cousins said. “Looking forward, I’m leaving it out on the floor every night, and I plan on coming back for that top spot.” 

Coming off a 31-point thrashing of the Nuggets, the Warriors are ready to unleash Boogie, even if the news has to get in the way of Draymond’s naps.

NBA GAMEDAY POST JANUARY 15th 2019

  • Associated Press

Warriors rout Nuggets after NBA-record 51 in first quarter

DENVER — Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson each scored 31 points as the Golden State Warriors, propelled by an NBA-record, 51-point first quarter, regained the top spot in the Western Conference by routing the Denver Nuggets 142-111 on Tuesday night.

Golden State cruised to a fifth straight win to move a half-game in front of the Nuggets, who had their 12-game home winning streak snapped.

The showdown between the top two teams in the conference proved a little too big for the Nuggets, with Curry and Company putting on a shooting exhibition all night long. The clinic began early with the Warriors erupting for 51 points in the opening quarter, breaking the old mark of 50 held by several teams. The last time it happened was also against Denver when Phoenix scored 50 on Nov. 10, 1990.

Golden State shot a blistering 60 percent from the field, had 38 assists and hit 21 3-pointers in leading wire-to-wire. Kevin Durantfinished with 27 points and Draymond Green was a plus-41 as he had 13 assists to go with four points.

Malik Beasley finished with 22 points for the Nuggets. Big man Nikola Jokic struggled with early foul trouble, finishing with 17 points and eight assists in 23 minutes.

76ERS 149, TIMBERWOLVES 107

PHILADELPHIA — Joel Embiid had 31 points and 13 rebounds, and Philadelphia scored 83 points in the first half in a thrashing of Minnesota in Jimmy Butler‘s first game against his former team.

The Golden State Warriors were the only team to score more first-half points in a game this season when they dropped 92 on the Chicago Bulls on Oct. 29. The Sixers hit a team-record 21 3-pointers and reached their highest point total in the 22-year history of the Wells Fargo Center.

Butler scored 19 points in the first meeting with Minnesota since it sent him to the 76ers in a package deal that brought forwards Robert Covington and Dario Saric in return. Covington and Saric were popular core pieces of Philadelphia’s Trust the Process rebuild and both received massive ovations from an appreciative crowd in tribute videos.

HAWKS 142, THUNDER 126

ATLANTA — Trae Young had 24 points and 11 assists to win the showdown of past and former Atlanta point guards, leading the Hawks over Oklahoma City.

Former Hawks point guard Dennis Schroder scored 21 points in his return to Atlanta. Schroder struggled early but had 14 points in the third period when the Thunder outscored the Hawks 41-27 to reclaim the lead.

Atlanta was similarly dominant in the second period, outscoring Oklahoma City 45-30 to match its high mark for any quarter this season. After holding a big lead of 15 points, the last time at 70-55, the Hawks led 70-59 at halftime.

John Collins made 12 of 14 shots from the field and led Atlanta with 26 points. Alex Len had 24 points and 11 rebounds. The Hawks were 18 of 37 on 3-pointers.

Russell Westbrook led the Thunder with 31 points and 11 assists. Paul George had 24 points and Jerami Grant added 21.

BUCKS 124, HEAT 86

MILWAUKEE — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in his fourth triple-double of the season, and Milwaukee cruised past Miami.

Eric Bledsoe had 17 points and Malcolm Brogdon added 16 for Milwaukee, which has won 13 of 16 dating to Dec. 14. The Bucks improved to 31-12, second-best in the NBA.

Justise Winslow and Hassan Whiteside had 19 points apiece for Miami, which fell to 21-21.

PACERS 131, SUNS 97

INDIANAPOLIS — Bojan Bogdanovic scored 20 points in Indiana’s easy victory over Phoenix.

Myles Turner returned for the first time in four games to finish with 18 points and six rebounds. Turner was nursing a sore right shoulder over the last week.

Indiana got off to a hot start thanks to Bogdanovic, who scored the Pacers’ first 10 points. The Pacers doubled the Suns’ total in the first quarter, leading 38-19 at the end of the period.

Indiana limited Devin Booker to eight points in 26 minutes. Rookie Deandre Ayton finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. T.J. Warren led Phoenix with 18 points and Kelly Oubre Jr. scored 16 points off the bench.

LAKERS 107, BULLS 100

LOS ANGELES — Lonzo Ball scored 19 points, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 17 and Los Angeles won for just the fourth time since LeBron James‘ groin injury, beating reeling Chicago.

Ball, who also had eight rebounds and six assists, scored 13 points during the second half as Los Angeles was able to break open what was a close game for the first 28 minutes. Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma scored 16 apiece.

The Lakers are 4-7 since James was injured in a Dec. 25 game at Golden State.

Jabari Parker scored 18 points and Lauri Markkanen added 17 for Chicago, which has dropped eight straight.