No Durant? No Worry!
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Klay Thompson scored 28 points with six 3-pointers, Stephen Curry had 22 points, eight assists and eight rebounds, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 125-101 on Wednesday night for their fifth straight win.
Even without injured Kevin Durant, the defending champs began to look like their dominant old selves.
Draymond Green posted another all-round balanced performance with seven points, six rebounds, six assists and two blocks for the Warriors, who played without NBA Finals MVP Durant as he nursed a bruised left thigh.
Andre Iguodala started in place of Durant, and the 2015 Finals MVP scored a season-high 11 points. The Warriors notched a season-best quarter with 44 points in the third to pull away after leading 51-50 at halftime.
Andrew Wiggins scored 17 points and Karl-Anthony Towns had 16 points and 12 rebounds as the Timberwolves had their five-game winning streak snapped.
This marked the first regular-season matchup between the teams after they played a pair of exhibition games in China last month.
It's the first time the teams faced off each atop their respective divisions. Only three times previously had they played both with records of .500 or above.
Thompson shot 11 for 20 overall and 6 of 12 from long range. Omri Casspi added 13 points, three blocks and two steals.
Golden State had to overcome another cold start on offense, shooting 8 for 22 in the first quarter — 4 of 10 on 3s. Two days earlier in a win against Miami, the Warriors shot 36.8 percent and 11 of 32 from beyond the arc.
CAUTION WITH DURANT
Durant categorized his injury as "nothing too serious." He said he hurt the quadriceps muscle the first play of the game against the Heat on Monday.
"If this were a playoff game, he'd be playing, but it's not, so it makes perfect sense to give him tonight off," coach Steve Kerr said. "We have a couple more nights before our next game. He should be fine I would think by then."
KD hopes to play Saturday against the 76ers.
"Probably, we'll see," he said.
Warriors great Al Attles returned to Oracle Arena one day after his 81st birthday and the entire arena sang "Happy Birthday" during the second quarter as Attles waved and smiled. A former player, coach and general manager of the team — he was part of Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point game — he had missed a night honoring him Oct. 27.
When Kerr announced pregame that Iguodala would replace Durant, he stopped and instructed everyone they could tweet out the news before he resumed the media session.
"Is everybody ready to tweet?" he said.
Then, he began clipping his fingernails and said the media could let him know when ready to proceed.
"Hang on, I've got a troublesome cuticle," he quipped.
Timberwolves: Minnesota missed all eight of its 3-pointers in the opening period and its first 11 overall before Nemanja Bjelica hit the Timberwolves' first make from deep at the 7:24 mark of the second quarter. ... The T-Wolves lost a third straight and 17th in 22 on Golden State's home floor.
Warriors: Golden State had its fourth 40-point quarter of the season. ... The Warriors blocked nine shots, their 11th time in 12 games with at least seven swats. ... Six different bench players scored at least six points, Nick Young with 12 and David West 10. ... Golden State had 37 assists.
Timberwolves: At Phoenix on Saturday night.