LOS ANGELES – The Golden State Warriors recorded their 13th straight victory to start the NBA season by fighting back from a big deficit to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 124-117 in a Western Conference thriller last night.
The Warriors, last season’s champions, are now just three wins away from posting the best-ever start to a season. The 1948 Washington Capitals and 1993 Houston Rockets both started 15-0.
Last night’s contest against the Clippers was billed as a heavyweight showdown and it certainly delivered as Golden State put on a show by coming back from 23 points down in the first half to stay perfect.
Clippers point-guard Chris Paul, who was back after missing two games through injury, dazzled in the first quarter with 18 points, hitting all seven of his shots as reigning MVP Stephen Curry struggled to ignite the Warriors’ offence.
By half time the lead was down to 14 and it was in the fourth quarter when Golden State found their groove and silenced the home fans at Staples Center.
Curry finished with 40 points as the Warriors hit eight of nine three-pointers in the final frame to take the lead before closing out the win with some solid foul shooting.
The Cleveland Cavaliers regained the best record in the NBA’s Eastern Conference with their first victory in three games against the Milwaukee Bucks last night.
Last year’s beaten finalists had suffered back-to-back defeats for the first time this season, including a double-overtime loss to the Bucks on Sunday, to drop to 8-3, but LeBron James ensured that it would not be three in a row as he led his side to victory.
James finished with 27 points on 9-13 shooting as the Cavs held off a second-half rally from the Bucks to win 115-110 at Quicken Loans Arena.
Cleveland led by 15 at the half, but the Bucks more than halved the deficit going into the final frame before Cleveland again pulled away in the fourth quarter.
Giannis Antetokounmpo stood out for the Bucks, who are now 5-7 and had a franchise-low 22 rebounds in the contest. The Greek forward scored a game-high 33, going 12-15 from the field and hitting all eight of his free throws, without committing a single turnover.
The Sacramento Kings remain winless on the road this season after falling to the Miami Heat 116-109 at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Eight of the Heat’s opening 11 matches of the NBA season have been at home and they have won six of them following last night’s victory. Dwyane Wade was the game’s leading scorer with 24 points, while Chris Bosh had 23 on 8-12 shooting to go along with 11 rebounds.
The Kings were without their main scorer DeMarcus Cousins after he was suspended in the lead-up to the match for elbowing Atlanta Hawks center Al Horford the night before and then lost Rudy Gay to a shoulder injury in the third quarter.
Sacramento point-guard Rajon Rondo had a season-high 18 assists, 14 points and nine rebounds after having three triple-doubles in his previous four games.
The Heat improve to 7-4, while the Kings are 4-9 overall and now 0-4 on the road.