Gameday: Bruised and battered Warriors in LA looking for road trip sweep


Gameday: Bruised and battered Warriors in LA looking for road trip sweep

Bruised by not broken, the Warriors aim for a sweep of their three-game road trip Saturday afternoon, when they face the Clippers at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 11:30, with tipoff scheduled for 12:35.

The Warriors (31-8) won on back-to-back nights in Dallas and Houston but arrived in LA with a lengthy injury list, including starters Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Draymond Green. Curry and Green probably will play, but Durant won't.

The Clippers (17-20) have had more than their share of injuries. They have used 14 different starting lineups, none more than seven games. Center DeAndre Jordan is the only starter not to have missed at least five games.

Warriors by 8.5

Draymond Green et al vs. Blake Griffin: The seeds of Green’s rise to All-Star status were planted with his work against Griffin in the first round of the 2014 playoffs. The Warriors since then are 12-1 against the Clippers. Griffin missed 14 games but returned last week and has played well in the four games, averaging 23.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 6.7 assists. He typically falters at the sight of Green. If that trend changes, the Clippers have at least a sliver of a chance to pull the upset.

Warriors: G Omri Casspi (mid-back strain), G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain), F Draymond Green (R knee soreness), F Andre Iguodala (L knee soreness) and C/F David West (R ankle sprain) are available to play. F Kevin Durant (R calf strain) is out.

Clippers: G Milos Teodosic (R foot plantar fasciitis) is listed as questionable. G Patrick Beverley (R knee surgery), F Danilo Gallinari (L glute, partial tear), G Austin Rivers (R ankle impingement) are listed as out.

LAST 10:
Warriors: 8-2. Clippers: 6-4.

John Goble (crew chief), Tyler Ford, Haywoode Workman

The Warriors won the first of four meetings this season, 141-113, on Oct. 30 in Los Angeles, and swept all four meetings last season. The Warriors have won the last 11 meetings and 19 of the last 24.

THE STEPH FACTOR: In the three games since Stephen Curry returned, the Warriors are averaging 130 points on 55.5-percent shooting, including 46.3 percent beyond the arc. A lot of it is Curry himself, but the offense that had been sagging during his 11-game absence (105.2 points per game) has been revived. The Clippers defense, so tremendous early in the season, has slipped into mediocrity. Look out.

EYE ON KLAY: Klay Thompson is shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 45.8 from deep, both career-high numbers. The 50-40-90 Club is in play. But LA, where he grew up and usually plays well, has been unkind. In three games (against the Clippers and Lakers) in LA this season, he’s shooting 36.0 percent overall and from beyond the arc. He’s due for a big game. Overdue.

YEN FOR 10: The Warriors are a league-best 16-3 on the road and have won nine in a row away from Oracle Arena. A win Saturday would make it 10, tying the second-best such streak in franchise history set in 2014-15. The franchise record is 14, set during their 24-0 start in 2015-16. The NBA record is 16, set by the 1971-72 Lakers during their all-time record 33-game win streak.

Warriors' veteran tag team makes sure things stayed calm in Game 3 win vs Spurs

Warriors' veteran tag team makes sure things stayed calm in Game 3 win vs Spurs

SAN ANTONIO -- The Illinois Boys don’t do flash or dash. They don’t do much thrilling or spilling, either.

They do reliable.

Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston do smooth hoops. They are seasoned veterans that do what it takes to make the game easier for their teammates, and the Warriors are the beneficiaries.

Both were on their games Thursday night, providing the insulation within a 110-97 victory over the San Antonio Spurs in Game 3 of their first-round series.

While Kevin Durant was leading the team and scoring and rebounding, and Draymond Green was leading in assists and blocks, and Kevon Looney was leading in steals, Iguodala and Livington were leading forces in making sure things stayed tight and together.

“It’s kind of funny how we trade off,” said Iguodala, from Springfield, Ill.

“We flip and flop,” said Livingston, from Peoria.

Iguodala played 27 minutes and made 4-of-9 shots from the field, Livingston played 20 minutes and made 4-of-9 from the field.

They combined for 26 points, 16 for Livingston and 10 for Iguodala. They combined for seven rebound and five assists. Iguodala was plus-12, Livingston plus-7.

Most important, they combined for one turnover.

On a night when the death of Erin Popovich, the wife of Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, was in the minds of all inside AT&T Center, the Warriors needed Iguodala and Livingston to be their usual steady selves.

“To have that veteran leadership in the locker room, I think it’s great,” Draymond Green said. “It was a perfect setup for a letdown . . . but we still wanted to come out and try to win the game. Having that veteran leadership to try to put that to the side, no matter what, knowing that they were going to come out on an emotional high.”

Green didn’t mention Iguodala or Livingston by name. He didn’t have to.

They are team leaders and calming influences in the locker room and on the court. And each does it quietly and without pomp.

Iguodala is 34, in his 14th season, drafted ninth overall in 2004 from the University of Arizona. Livingston is 32, in his 14th season, drafted fourth overall, out of Peoria Central High School.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr, by design, wants one of them on the court at all times.

They swapped in the first quarter, Livingston for Iguodala. They swapped in the second quarter, Iguodala for Livingston. They swapped in the third, Livingston for Iguodala and again in the fourth, Iguodala for Livingston.

“We just let the game come to us,” Livingston said.

Maybe that’s why the work they do seems so smooth and almost quiet.

Kerr updates status of Durant, Livingston after ankle injuries in Game 3 win

Kerr updates status of Durant, Livingston after ankle injuries in Game 3 win

The Warriors are already dealing with Steph Curry's injury. And then they held their breath with two other players in nearly back-to-back plays in Game 3 Thursday night against the Spurs. 

Kevin Durant and Shaun Livingston both left the game early after rolling their left ankle. Durant exited the game with 4:36 remaining and Livingston headed to the locker room at the 4:03 mark. 

"I think they're going to be okay," Steve Kerr said to reporters after the win in San Antonio. "Shaun's was probably a little worse than Kevin's. Both sprained ankles. I think they'll be alright." 

Going after a loose ball with Patty Mills playing tight defense, you can see Durant injure his ankle below: 

The Warriors' star forward told the following to ESPN's Chris Haynes: 

Durant led all scorers with 26 points. Livingston's 16 points were third on the Warriors Thursday and tied his season high.