OAKLAND, Calif. — The Golden State Warriors were without three of their starters, and yet the Portland Trail Blazers were still no match for the reigning NBA champs.

On Monday night at Oracle Arena, the Warriors snatched their seventh straight victory by winning 111-104.

“I’m always satisfied with any win, but particularly without three starters,” said Warriors head coach Steve Kerr. “That’s a great sign.”

Stephen Curry (ankle), Draymond Green (shoulder) and Zaza Pachulia (shoulder) were out, but Kevin Durant continued his stellar play by way of a team-high 28 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three blocks.

“Our focus level is just on another level because of the injuries that we have on our team,” Durant said. “We have to be locked in on every single play; and that’s hard to do in this league, and that’s hard to do in December, especially after winning a championship.”

Klay Thompson chipped in 24 points and four 3-pointers.

“These night are really powerful for a team where guys are able to get out there who aren’t usually in the lineup,” Kerr said. “It makes them feel good, it makes us feel good and it just strengthens the depth.”

Golden State (22-6) has now claimed 19 of its past 21 games against Portland (13-13), including 12 in a row at home.

The Warriors blocked nine shots. Reserve big man David West registered 10 points and swatted away a season-high four shots.

Warriors’ bench erupts after West’s vicious dunkDavid West posterizes Portland’s Jake Layman with a monster one-handed jam in the fourth quarter.

“We’re using our length and we’re blocking some shots,” Durant said. “We had nine tonight, which is pretty sweet to have that luxury of protecting the rim.”

Kevin Durant helped the Golden State Warriors hold off the Portland Trail Blazers.

Portland is in a funk, having lost five straight, including its previous four at home. They were held to 42 percent shooting from the field on Monday, and they allowed the Warriors to shoot it at a 55 percent clip. Only three Trail Blazers players scored in double digits.

Damian Lillard did his best to single-handedly steal this game. He scored a game-high 39 points. After being down by as many as 24 points, Portland reduced the deficit to eight down the stretch of the fourth quarter, but Lillard had little help and wasn’t able to finish the deal.

“I like the way we competed,” Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts said. “I thought Damian did a nice job of leading that group … they all competed, led by Dame. It was good to get back into the game. When you cut it to eight points, you never know what can happen.”

CJ McCollum finished with 21 points, and Evan Turner supplied 10 points.

“I think when you put yourself in a hole, when you got to work so hard to dig out of it against a team that runs the way they do, has as many shooters [as they do] and plays great offense, you’re not giving yourself a great chance,” Lillard said. “And I think once we cut it to eight, it was just a matter of time before somebody hit a shot. We just can’t dig ourselves a hole like that.”

Portland is No. 21 in the league in 3-point makes per game, a low tally for a coach who loves the long ball. On Monday, the Blazers were 7-of-28 from downtown, which represented an opponent season low of 25 percent for the Warriors.

“I love 3s. I wish we could take more and make more, but they’re not always going to be there,” Stotts said. “We’ve had good 3-point shooting games. It hasn’t really been as consistent as I would like. It comes and goes.”

The defensive play of the game came early in the third quarter:

Turner was on a fast break with Durant trailing him. Turner leaped in the air, getting Durant to bite and passed it to Lillard. The point guard went up for a dunk, but rookie Jordan Bell appeared out of nowhere for the chase-down, left-handed block, after which the ball ricocheted off the glass and the Warriors scored on the other end.

“He just plays like a vet,” Durant said of Bell. “Coming in, just doing his job, playing extremely hard. That chase-down block after the turnover was spectacular. That play right there kind of got us going.”

Warriors guard Nick Young left the game after the third quarter. He was diagnosed with a concussion. Minutes prior to that, he collided with Bell and continued to play on. Young is in the concussion protocol. He ended the evening with 12 points off the bench.

In addition to Monday night’s contest, nine of the next 10 games are at home for the Warriors. They will not leave the state of California for the remainder of the calendar year.

The Mavericks are on deck for Thursday. Golden State defeated the Mavs 133-103 on Oct. 23 in Dallas.

Courtesy: ESPN.com


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