Durant powers Warriors past OKC Thunder
LOS ANGELES — Kevin Durant delivered 28 points and Stephen Curry finished with 21 points and nine rebounds as the Golden State Warriors improved to 46-14 with a 112-80 win over Oklahoma City.
After a seesaw first half, the defending league champions Warriors got in a groove, going on a 21-1 run spanning the third and fourth quarters to seize control and turn Saturday’s contest into a blowout.
The Warriors also avenged a pair of losses to the Thunder in November and just before the National Basketball Association All- Star Game break earlier this month.
“We’re champions. We’re 46-14 and we’ve got one of the best road records in the league,” Durant said.
Thunder star Paul George was held to just five points, while a struggling Carmelo Anthony scored only 14. Russell Westbrook led Oklahoma City with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
“He’s played at such a high level offensively for such a long time, a night like tonight’s going to happen,” coach Billy Donovan said of George.
Anthony’s frustration boiled over when he got into a testy exchange with the Warriors’ Draymond Green. Green was given a technical foul — his 15th of the season — for swatting the head of Anthony who then threw his blue headband down on the court before engaging Green.
“I play with high emotion,” Green said. “I’ll continue to play with passion.”
Elsewhere, the Miami Heat used a balanced scoring attack to halt a three-game losing streak by rolling over the struggling Memphis Grizzlies, 115-89.
Tyler Johnson scored 23 points for the Heat, who are battling for a postseason spot after winning for just the second time in their last 10 games.
Memphis has lost nine games in a row, the longest current losing streak in the NBA.
Justise Winslow scored a seasonhigh 17 points for the Heat while Wayne Ellington drained five three pointers and finished with 15 points.
Miami veteran Dwyane Wade got into foul trouble and played just 18 minutes.
Andrew Harrison scored 17 points for the Grizzlies, who played without injured leading scorer Tyreke Evans.
The Heat took the lead for good at 28-26 and their margin reached 92-70 by the end of the third quarter.
Miami outscored Memphis 5030 in the paint, 13-2 on fast breaks and 26-8 off turnovers. —