OAKLAND, California (AP) – Golden State wasn’t as crisp offensively as it usually is, and the two-time defending National Basketball Association (NBA) champs certainly know they’ll need to get better coming out of the All-Star break.
Some heady defence early and late, along with some timely perimeter scoring from Stephen Curry helped make up for it.
Curry made a pair of pivotal three-pointers in the fourth quarter, Kevin Durant had 28 points and seven assists, and the Warriors beat the Jazz 115-108 on Tuesday night.
“We have spurts where we look unstoppable and then we have some spurts where it just gets a little congested and bogs down a little bit,’’ Curry said. “We’re getting better. Everybody’s attention is on those details to try to get better. We have 26 games left to figure it out.’’
At 41-15, the Warriors have the second-best record in the NBA behind the Milwaukee Bucks. The Warriors have won four straight and 16 of 17 but have been slowing down heading into the break.
The win over Utah was the third straight in which coach Steve Kerr’s team has had to rally from behind.
“They were rolling offensively,’’ Kerr said of the Jazz. “We turned up the volume defensively down the stretch. Steph got hot and we were able to push ahead.’’
Curry had 24 points on eight of 19 shooting. The two-time Most Valuable Player (MVP) missed his first five shots beyond the arc and finished five of 14 on three-pointers.
Klay Thompson scored 22 and DeMarcus Cousins added 12 points and 10 rebounds for Golden State.
“We need to play better,’’ Durant said. “I believe my coaches and teammates think the same thing. I just don’t want to get complacement.’’
Donovan Mitchell had 25 points and seven rebounds for Utah. Rudy Gobert added 13 points and 16 rebounds. Gobert’s double-double is his 46th of the season.
“They made some tough shots and then I thought we just wore down a little bit and had some breakdowns defensively late where they were able to get clean looks,’’ Jazz coach Quin Snyder said.