ORACLE ARENA — Coming off two consecutive losses for the third time this season, the Warriors were in need of a win to break their mini-slump.
With a late second-quarter surge, the Warriors seized a lead that they extended through the second half en route to a 106-87 victory over the Suns.
Phoenix came into Oracle hoping to be the only team this season to hand the Warriors multiple losses, and they started out the night on fire.
Andre Iguodala, finished the night with a gritty 12-points and told SFBay the Warriors knew Phoenix was coming after them:
“Last year we struggled with them, they gave us some problems. We can tell they really come after us, so we know what we’re going up against before the game starts.”
The Suns began the game on an 8-0 run as the Warriors missed their first 10 shots. Golden State paid for it through the rest of the first quarter, with Markieff Morris taking control, scoring 11 of his 17 points in the frame.
Crashing the offensive boards, the Suns extended their lead to to 12 points in the second quarter making Golden State pay for its turnovers and missteps.
But late in the second, Stephen Curry got hot from distance and helped the Warriors outscore Phoenix to take a 52-51 lead heading into halftime.
Turning up the defensive intensity in the third quarter, Golden State extended their lead into double-digits while Leandro Barbosa and Iguodala added energy off the bench to maintain the Warriors lead while the starters rested.
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said second half showed that the Warriors are back on track defensively and told SFBay he’s confident that the good offense always follows great defense:
“The defense was tremendous in the second half. I just thought our guys really did a good job of staying home on three point shooters and closing out on them when they did get an opening and making everything difficult…Really a good win tonight, it was a hell of an effort.”
The Warriors continued to let loose in the final stanza, outscoring the Suns 28-17 and finishing the game with five players in double-figures.
Golden State will face the Suns two more times this season (March 9 in Phoenix, April 2 in Oakland). After Saturday’s contest, Morris added weight to Iguodala’s statement about the Suns going after Golden State, saying:
“We’re going to watch film as a team and the next time we play them, we’ll be ready.”
The Warriors, now 37-8, have two days of rest before visiting Sacramento on Tuesday then finishing back-to-back games hosting Dallas Wednesday.
The Warriors 37 wins before the All-Star Break is a franchise record (previous best was a 35-win mark set in 1975-76). … Golden State held Phoenix to 36.3 percent from the field and held Phoenix to a season-low 87 points in the contest. … Stephen Curry (25 points) and Klay Thompson (22) both scored at least 20 points in the same game for the 60th time in their careers together. … Leandro Barbosa scored in double figures for the seventh time this season (14 points), his second time with at least 10 points in consecutive games. … Andre Iguodala scored in double figures for the eighth time this season, tallying 12 points, four rebounds, two assists, two steals and one block. … Draymond Green grabbed 11 rebounds to go with nine points, his 12th double-digit rebound game of the season.