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WARRIORS NETS WIN NO. 22

GGThe Golden State Warriors improved to 22-0 on Sunday with a 114-98 victory over the Brooklyn Nets, with guard Stephen Curry scoring 11 of his 28 points in the final 2:10 of the third quarter.

The Warriors opened the game with a 25-8 lead and held a 15-point lead with 1:49 remaining in the first half, but Curry went on his scoring spree after Golden State faced a trio of five-point deficits.

His timely spree featured a mix of aggressive moves and effective perimetre play.

“It’s pretty purposeful just trying to see if I can get some room and figure out a way to impact the game,” Curry said.

“Things started to click. We were down three at the time or something like that, so we just needed a little life. We like to close quarters out strong, and we were obviously able to do that, get a nice lead and not look back from there.”

A minute after Shane Larkin’s three-pointer gave the Nets a 75-70 lead, Curry hit a driving bank shot for a 76-76 deadlock.

On the next possession, Curry gave the Warriors the lead for good with an uncontested three-pointer.

He finished the quarter by finding centre Festus Ezeli for an alley-oop dunk before converting a three-point play and knocking down a three-pointer with 1.9 seconds left for an 87-80 edge.

“It’s a show,” Golden State reserve forward Marreese Speights said of Curry’s performances. “We’re just like fans on the bench enjoying the show every time he gets going.”

“When he needed to, he stepped up and put the dagger in us. He’s a great player,” said Brooklyn coach Lionel Hollins.

The Warriors did not look back, seizing control early in the fourth due to their reserves.

Curry and backcourt mate Klay Thompson sat for the first six minutes as the Warriors took a 106-89 lead, getting their first 19 points of the quarter from the second unit.

Curry and Thompson returned but neither player was needed on the second night of a back-to-back.

While Curry helped the Warriors finish off the win, Thompson got it started. He scored 12 of his 21 points when Golden State appeared on its way to a runaway in the opening quarter. Forward Draymond Green finished with 22 points, nine rebounds and seven assists.

“We got stops and got out and ran,” Green said. “Once we run, it’s tough to stop us, and 30 (Curry) was 30 (Curry).”

Ezeli scored 12 points and guard Leandro Barbosa contributed eight of his 11 early in the fourth.

Golden State shot 51 percent and made 14 of 33 3-pointers while getting a standing ovation from most of the fans at Barclays Centre after the final buzzer. The Warriors posted their 26th consecutive regular-season victory dating to April 9 and 12th road win of the season.

The Nets (5-15) started the Sunday game as a duplicate of Friday’s ugly loss to the New York Knicks. After falling behind 17 in the opening quarter, Brooklyn scored the final 12 points of the first half, getting within 57-54 on a three-pointer by forward Joe Johnson in the final seconds.

Forward Thaddeus Young led the Nets with 25 points, with two of his baskets giving the Nets leads of 66-61 and 68-63 a few minutes before Curry’s flurry.

Centre Brook Lopez added 18 three weeks after missing the game-winner in regulation of Brooklyn’s eight-point overtime loss at Golden State.

“We’ve got to calm the flame down,” Young said. “Once he starts to get going, starts to get in his rhythm, it’s hard to stop the whole team. They’re a good team. They wouldn’t be 22-0 if they weren’t a good team.”

© Reuters

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