76ers-Warriors Preview

BY foxsports • March 27, 2016

When they meet Sunday in Oakland, the Golden State Warriors and Philadelphia 76ers will participate in not just the league's most monumental mismatch this season.

It will also be the biggest in league history in terms of win-loss records.

The 76ers, though, gave Golden State all they could handle earlier this season and will try to pull off a most unlikely upset and end the Warriors' NBA-record regular-season home win streak.

Golden State (65-7) moved 56 1/2 games ahead of Philadelphia (9-64) following the 76ers' 108-105 defeat in Portland on Saturday. Two teams have been farther apart at the end of a season previously, with the 1972-73 Boston Celtics finishing 59 games better than Philadelphia's infamous 9-73 team.

At the time of tip-off, however, there has been no margin greater than 52 games between two teams. Late during their record-setting 72-win 1995-96 season, the Chicago Bulls were 67-9 and 51 1/2 games better than a 16-61 Philadelphia 76ers team they routed 112-82 on April 12, 1996.

Golden State remained one game ahead of Chicago's record-setting pace with a 128-120 victory over Dallas on Friday.

"We know we can make history," guard Klay Thompson said after scoring 40 points. "That's a good motivator itself."

Thompson and Steph Curry combined for 73 points and 14 of the Warriors' 21 3-pointers. Thompson's shot from beyond the arc with 9:51 remaining gave his team 934 3-pointers, breaking the single-season NBA mark set by Houston last season.

"That's pretty sweet," said Thompson, whose team has 938. "The game is kind of changing and I think we're on the forefront of that. Our team's shooting ability is second to none."

Golden State now tries to extend its home win streak to 53 and claim a sixth straight victory over Philadelphia. Last season's matchup at Oracle Arena was one-sided as the Warriors won 126-86 on Dec. 30, 2014, but the Sixers gave them everything they could handle before Harrison Barnes drilled a 3-pointer with 0.2 seconds left for a 108-105 win at Philadelphia on Jan. 30.

The Warriors have averaged 111.2 points and won by 22.2 points per game during their win streak over the 76ers. Thompson scored 32 in the January victory, during which Golden State blew a 24-point second-half lead.

Philadelphia won't have Jahlil Okafor or Nerlens Noel for this matchup because of knee injuries.

With those two players out, the 76ers suffered their eighth straight loss and 21st in 22 games Saturday. Philadelphia has lost 12 straight on the road and is 3-34 there, but coach Brett Brown was encouraged by his team's latest performance.

"You walk away feeling like we could have stolen a win on the road," Brown said. "I'm thrilled with their effort. I think they showed a side that they've been showing.

The 76ers need one win to avoid tying their 1972-73 team for the worst record in league history, and it's a tall order here given they are 46-191 over the last two-plus seasons.

"When you lose at the rate we have lost, teams can do two things. You can disintegrate and go into separate places, a bunch of islands, or you can come together. Our group stays together," Brown said. "We just try to get better day by day. That's not real sexy but it's true. It's what we do."

Andrew Bogut (foot) is considered doubtful for Golden State while Andre Iguodala (ankle) is among the Warriors who are out.

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