Curry carries Warriors over Cavs
STEPHEN Curry scored 42 points to lead the Golden State Warriors to a 129-105 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday in an NBA Finals rematch in name only.
Curry drained 9 3-pointers and Kevin Durant added 25 points on 9-of- 16 shooting as the Warriors pulled away in the second half against a Cleveland team that bears little resemblance to the LeBron James-led Cavs that battled the Warriors in the last four championship series.
Curry, looking fully recovered in his third game back from a groin injury that sidelined him for 11 games, added 9 rebounds and 7 assists. Durant pulled down 10 rebounds and handed out 9 assists.
The Warriors were back in Cleveland for the first time since June, when they beat the Cavs to win their second straight NBA title and third in four years.
Since then the Cavs have seen James depart as a free agent to the Los Angeles Lakers. Forward JR Smith was also absent from the team, Kevin Love was nursing a foot injury and Kyle Korver was recently traded to Utah.
Tristan Thompson, one of the only holdovers from the Cavaliers teams that challenged the Warriors — and beat them for the crown in 2016 — scored 14 points with 19 rebounds.
Rookie Collin Sexton led the Cavaliers with 21 points.
The Warriors improved to 17-9 — still fourth in a Western Conference led by the Denver Nuggets, who edged the Orlando Magic 124-118 in overtime for a seventh straight victory that pushed their record to 17-7.
They finished the night half a game in front of the Oklahoma City Thunder, who erased a 23-point deficit with less than 5 minutes to play to beat the Brooklyn Nets 114-112 in New York.
“This is a special night,” said Thunder forward Paul George, who scored 25 of his 47 points in the fourth quarter. “We came together when we were down — our backs against the wall. We showed who we are tonight.”
George drained the game-winning 3 with 3 seconds remaining, taking a feed from Russell Westbrook, who drew two defenders then passed to George on the perimeter. Westbrook finished with 21 points, 17 assists and 15 rebounds, his 108th career triple-double moving him past Jason Kidd for third place on the NBA’s all-time list.
Only Oscar Robertson with 181 and Magic Johnson with 138 have achieved more triple-doubles.
Also, it was: Lakers 121, Spurs 113; Raptors 113, 76ers 102; Wizards 131, Hawks 117; Bucks 115, Pistons 92; Grizzlies 96, Clippers 86; Timberwolves 121, Hornets 104; and Pelicans 132, Mavericks 106.
Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George hits the game-winning 3-point shot to defeat the Brooklyn Nets 114-112 in their NBA match-up at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, on Wednesday. — Reuters