THE Golden State Warriors showed little rust with all starters in double figures on their way to a 106-94 rout over the Utah Jazz in the opener of their Western Conference semifinals series on Tuesday (Wednesday, Manila time) at the Oracle Arena.
Steph Curry led the way for the Warriors with 22 points, seven rebounds and five assists in three quarters. Draymond Green and Kevin Durant added 17 markers apiece, with the former providing another all-around performance to help take away the fight from the Jazz early.
The Warriors went on a 9-0 start but saw the Jazz storm back to get within two, 23-21, late in the first quarter. But Golden State, led by Curry’s 16 first-half points, maintained a double digit lead, leading by as much as 17 before Utah trimmed the deficit to 12, 58-46, at halftime.
Utah’s 8-3 start after the break got them within seven early in the third period. But a 9-0 run by Golden State put the Warriors back up by 16. Still, Rodney Hood kept the Jazz in play with 10 points in the period to stay within 11 entering the fourth period.
But Oracle Arena went rocking with the Warriors starting the fourth quarter on an 10-0 blitz to take a 94-73 lead with less than nine minutes to play, all with Curry and Durant on the bench.
Curry got back sparingly in the fourth along with Durant, but the back-to-back MVP sat down quickly with the Warriors comfortably ahead, 101-81, with over four minutes left. The Jazz also pulled their starters at that point and the bench only got them as close as 12.
Klay Thompson added 15 points, while Zaza Pachulia chipped in 10.
Rudy Gobert led the Jazz with 13 points and eight rebounds. Gordon Hayward and Hood added 12 apiece.
Game 2 is on Thursday still at Oracle Arena.