KEVIN Durant led a late charge to help Golden State earn its 12 straight win the hard way, holding off a gritty Atlanta stand to come out on top, 105-100, at Oracle Arena on Monday (Tuesday, Manila time).
Trailing by seven, 67-74, at 3:58 in the third, Durant and Andre Iguodala waxed hot in a 21-7 run, including an 8-0 blitz to start the fourth quarter, to take a seven point lead, 88-81, with 9:08 to go. The Hawks got within two, 89-91, but Durant teamed up with Steph Curry this time in an 11-5 rally to put Golden State 102-94 with 2:48 remaining.
Atlanta mounted one last push to close the gap to three, 99-102, with 1:34 left, but Draymond Green came up with two huge blocks on back-to-back Hawks possessions to seal the victory for the Warriors over the slumping Hawks.
Klay Thompson started out on fire, with 11 points in the first quarter, but the Hawks closed out the period with a 17-4 run to end up with a 29-27 lead after 12 minutes of play. Then with the game tied at 44 at the 4:58 mark of the second quarter, Atlanta unleashed 7-0 blitz and took a 53-50 edge at the break before building its biggest lead in the third quarter, only to lose steam in the endgame.
Durant and Curry each scored 25 to lead the league-best Warriors, now with a 16-2 slate. Thompson added 20, while Iguodala chipped in 12 off the bench.
Dennis Schroder finished with 24 points for Atlanta, who lost its third straight game and fell to 10-8. Dwight Howard and Paul Millsap both had double-doubles, with each scoring 14 while the former hauled 16 rebounds while the latter grabbed 14.