MANILA, Philippines – Embarrassed on their homecourt last outing, the defending champions didn’t let up this time.
The Golden State Warriors got off to a hot start and never looked back for a 132-105 crushing of the Los Angeles Clippers on the road in the NBA Western Conference first-round playoffs on Thursday, April 18 (Friday, April 19, Manila time).
Kevin Durant erupted for 38 points to lead the Warriors, who rebounded from a Game 2 shocker where they blew a 31-point advantage against the No. 8 Clippers.
Durant, who sizzled with 27 points on a 10-of-15 shooting in the first half, also dished out 7 assists and grabbed 4 rebounds to power the Warriors to a 2-1 series lead.
“He had a different mindset than the other night and set the tone right away,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said of the two-time Finals MVP Durant.
Steph Curry also fired 21 points on a 7-of-11 shooting and Andre Iguodala added 15 points for the Warriors, who also had an impressive 35 assists.
@KDTrey5 scores 38 PTS in 29 minutes of game action, as the @warriors top LAC on the road in Game 3! #StrengthInNumbers #NBAPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/gNf7oAO6Bn — NBA (@NBA) April 19, 2019
The Warriors zoomed to a 41-24 advantage in the 1st quarter, stretched the lead to over 30 points, and kept a wide gap the rest of the way unlike in Game 2 where they blew a whopping 88-57 cushion with 7:10 left in the 3rd quarter.
“It was a different vibe the other night,” said Kerr of the Warriors, who also lost All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins in Game 2 – and likely for the rest of the playoffs – due to a torn quadriceps in his left leg.
“We had control of the game defensively the whole night.”
Klay Thompson scored 12 and Kevon Looney had 10 points to round out the 5 Warriors in double-figures.
“They dissected us,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said of the two-time defending champions.
Ivica Zubac paced the Clippers with a double-double of 18 points and 15 rebounds and Lou Williams added 16 markers. – Rappler.com