ORACLE ARENA — The Warriors were mercilessly on point Wednesday night.
Across-the-board offensive contribution and defensive awareness showcased the potential and depth of Golden State as the Warriors crushed the Clippers 121-104.
The Warriors forced the Clippers into two shot clock violations in the first half and gave the Lob City Clippers a taste of their own medicine.
With three different players (Draymond Green, Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry) in double-digits, and help coming from all roster spots, the Warriors went from a respectable 10-point lead at the end of the first quarter to a 23-point, 65-42 lead at halftime.
Golden State was unrelenting. The third quarter took way and Green took things to a different level.
Green scored eight quick points in the first three minutes of the frame with two treys and a quick runner, tying his career-high in points and three-pointers in a game.
Though Green said he knew things were clicking for him, he gave all the credit to his team mates for being matchup nightmares:
“I play with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. Those guys come off screens and defenses swarm them, the I get open shots. I just have to knock them down. I was able to do that tonight and my guys continued to find me. It’s just a blessing.”
By the end of the night, Green finished with a new career-high 24 points to go with eight rebounds behind Curry who had a game-high 28 points, while three other Warriors tallied double-digit performances — Thompson (19), Harrison Barnes (10), Leandro Barbosa (13).
As expected, time passed and the California rivals remembered they hate each other.
As Curry fell, Paul screamed at an official, complaining about the elbow from Curry. Paul was given a technical.
Kerr said that he was frustrated and that it became tough for him to watch the game start to slow down because of foul calls:
“The third quarter was frustrating, really frustrating. The game sort of stopped. I think we were all really frustrated. I got my first ‘T’ so that’s just the way it goes.”
Despite the predictably chippy nature of the second half and a fourth-quarter surge from the Clippers, the Warriors closed out the game maintaining at least a 13-point lead throughout the final quarter to seal a 4-0 start on the season. This is the best start for Golden State since the 1994-95 season, when they started 5-0.
Kerr maintains that things can get better, and the team agrees. Green told SFBay the Warriors are looking at their problems and shortcomings as another sign that things will be great down the road:
“We played good, but nowhere near as good as we can get or we are going to get. It’s exciting. We won by almost 20 but we’ve got a lot of room to grow. Some people would look at that and worry but we look at that and we’re excited.”
The Warriors head out on the road for a back-to-back against Houston on Saturday and Phoenix Sunday before returning home to face the NBA champions San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday.
The Warriors improved to 4-0 for the first time since the 1994-95 season and for just the fourth time in franchise history. … Steve Kerr became the first head coach in Warriors franchise history to win the first four games of his NBA head coaching career and the first in the NBA since Frank Vogel with the Pacers in 2011. … The Warriors converted all 20 of their free throw attempts, tied for the third-most without a miss in a single game in franchise history. … Stephen Curry has now hit a three-pointer in 73 consecutive games, extending the longest active three-point streak in the NBA (fifth-longest in NBA history). … David Lee appeared in his first game of the 2014-2015 campaign, but left in the second quarter with a strained left hamstring and did not return.