Despite cold Curry, Durant and Warriors beat 76ers 119-108
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Stephen Curry is surrounded by stars with the Golden State Warriors. He’s never needed them more than Monday night.
Kevin Durant had 27 points in his return to the lineup and the Warriors overcame the worst 3-point shooting performance of Curry’s career in a 119-108 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.
Curry was 0 for 11 from 3-point range. That topped his previous worst outing without making a 3 when he went 0 for 10 from distance on Nov. 4 against the Lakers. The two-time reigning MVP leads the league by a wide margin with 231 3-pointers this season.
”On a night like tonight where Steph doesn’t have it going, we have a lot of other guys who can score and make plays,” coach Steve Kerr said. ”A lot of them came through.”
Curry still had 19 points, making 7 of 12 2-point attempts and all five of his free-throw tries.
”I forgot to adjust to the thickness of the air,” Curry joked, adding that ”it happens, but you have to find other ways to impact the game.”
Klay Thompson scored 21 points and Draymond Green had 14 points, 11 assists, six rebounds and five steals for the Warriors, who opened a five-game East Coast trip by winning their fourth straight and boosting their NBA-best record to 50-9. Durant returned after missing a game with a right hand injury.
”There are games where the shots just aren’t falling,” Green said. ”It was a good effort by everybody to chip in. Sometimes it has to be a complete team effort, and tonight it was.”
Dario Saric had 21 points for Philadelphia, which once again played without big man Joel Embiid. The 76ers announced earlier Monday that Embiid would be out indefinitely after experiencing swelling and soreness in his left knee following recent practices. Embiid leads the team with 20.2 points and 7.8 rebounds per game but has missed 14 straight games and 17 of the last 18.
The Warriors took control in the third quarter, using a 12-3 run over the first 2:31 of the period to turn a three-point halftime edge into a 71-59 cushion. The lead grew to 84-70 with 3:41 left in the third on Durant’s two free throws.
Philadelphia tried to make it a game, but Golden State had too much firepower, even as it made just 6 of 29 from deep.
”That’s the dangerous part of picking a game plan,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said. ”When you take away something, something else gets exposed. It’s hard to guard everything. That’s the Holy Grail, what they have.”
NOT CURRY’S NIGHT
Curry air balled his first 3-point try of the game and missed the rim from deep again later in the first quarter.
Curry displayed his frustration throughout the first half with head shakes, leg slaps and some choice words to himself.
”All but three of them were almost wide open,” he said.
Curry followed up his miserable performance against the Lakers by setting an NBA record with 13 made 3-pointers on Nov. 7 against New Orleans. He’ll get a chance for a similar rebound on Tuesday night at Washington.
”I don’t ever get down on myself,” he said. ”I still have confidence the next one is going in.”
HART GETS BEAT, TOO
Comedian Kevin Hart, a Philadelphia native, was seated courtside next to 76ers owner Josh Harris. Hart visited the Warriors locker room after the game, but during it, he tried unsuccessfully to distract Golden State.
”It’s impossible to give a PG-rated version of what he was saying,” Green said.
Warriors: Curry remained three 3-pointers shy of tying Kobe Bryant for 11th on the NBA career list with 1,827. … Golden State missed 15 of its 16 3-point attempts in the first half.
76ers: Top pick Ben Simmons had bone marrow injected into his foot to stimulate bone growth and speed up the healing process. Philadelphia announced last week that Simmons would miss the entire season after fracturing his right foot in training camp. … Jahlil Okafor followed his season-high 28 points in Saturday’s 110-109 loss at the Knicks with four points in 17 minutes.
Warriors: Play the second game of five-game East Coast trip Tuesday night in Washington.
76ers: Host Miami on Wednesday night.