Curry, Warriors return from All-Star break to rout Blazers

Feb 24, 2022, 7:49 AM | Updated: 10:56 pm
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, right, shoots in front of Portland Trail Blazers forward...

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, right, shoots in front of Portland Trail Blazers forward Trendon Watford during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer)

(AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Stephen Curry had 18 points and 14 assists and the Golden State Warriors returned from the All-Star break to rout the Portland Trail Blazers 132-95 on Thursday night.

Klay Thompson also had 18 points for the Warriors, who had lost four of their last five.

“It was good, a good way to kind of come back from the break and establish ourselves on both ends of the floor,” Curry said.

The Warriors led by 37 points in the second half and rested their starters in the fourth quarter. Eight players finished in double figures — the last time Golden State had as many was in 2009.

“I enjoyed not playing the fourth quarter, and seeing our young guys get some burn and play very well,” Thompson said.

Anfernee Simons had 24 points for Portland, which had won four straight going into the break.

Portland announced a day earlier that center Jusuf Nurkic would be out for at least the next four weeks because of plantar fasciitis. The injury was the latest blow to the Blazers, who are short-handed without star Damian Lillard following an abdominal procedure.

Portland coach Chauncey Billups started Drew Eubanks — who played at Oregon State — at center. Eubanks, in his fourth NBA season, went to Toronto as part of the Goran Dragic trade with San Antonio at the deadline and was later waived. He signed a 10-day contract with Portland on Tuesday.

Portland jumped out to a 29-19 lead in the opening quarter but it didn’t last. The Warriors capped a 15-3 run with Jordan Poole’s 3-pointer to go up 50-38.

Golden State pushed the lead to 20 points and went into the break ahead 70-57. Curry had 18 points and 13 assists for his sixth career double-double before halftime, and first since December 2017.

“Steph was brilliant tonight,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I loved his patience and the way he ran the team tonight. He played a beautiful game.”

Added Thompson: “(Curry) has always been able to pass like this. Just his scoring is so good it can get overlooked sometimes,” Thompson said.

The Blazers’ struggles continued in the third quarter with just 16 points.

“I thought they played hard and they played well, they just came up against a juggernaut,” Billups said. “They kind of took off on us there, they had 39 points in the second quarter, that really hurt us and we could never really recover.”

TIES THAT BIND

Gary Payton II started for Golden State although he was questionable going into the game because of a shin injury. Like his dad, Payton played at Oregon State and received a warm ovation from Portland fans during introductions.

In addition to the Oregon State ties, there was also a Washington State connection between Thompson and Portland’s CJ Elleby — and former Cougars quarterback Gardner Minshew, who was among the fans at the game.

TIP INS

Warriors: Kerr said before the game that Thompson is still on a 30-minute restriction. … Curry extended his streak of at least one 3-pointer to 180 games. … Golden State also won the first two of the three-game series with the Blazers.

Trail Blazers: All five of Portland’s starters in the season opener are either injured for the long-term (Lillard, Nurkic) or have been traded (CJ McCollum, Robert Covington, Norman Powell). … The Blazers made just nine 3-pointers in 35 attempts.

UP NEXT

Warriors: Host Dallas on Sunday.

Trail Blazers: Host Denver on Sunday.

___

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