Instant Replay: Warriors manhandle Mavs, win fifth straight

Instant Replay: Warriors manhandle Mavs, win fifth straight


The Warriors don’t know exactly when Kevin Durant will return to the lineup, but they seem to have figured out how to excel without him.

And on Tuesday night, for the first time this season, they found a way to win without Andre Iguodala.

Behind stellar shooting and tight defense, the Warriors won their fifth consecutive game, running away from the Mavericks for a 112-87 victory at American Airlines Center in Dallas.

Four Warriors scored in double figures, led by Klay Thompson’s 23 points. Ian Clark tossed in 18 points, Stephen Curry 17 and Pat McCaw added 10 as the Warriors defeated Dallas for the sixth consecutive time and the 13th of 14.

The Warriors (57-14) got a big boost from their bench, which outscored the Dallas reserves 49-36.

Dirk Nowitzki scored 16 points to lead Dallas (30-40), which took a blow to its playoff hopes. Seth Curry put in 10 points for the Mavericks.

Thompson’s shooting was superb, as was Draymond Green’s all-around game.

Thompson’s line: 23 points (9-of-15 from the field, 5-of-8 from beyond the arc), three rebounds, three assists and three steals. He played 32 minutes and finished plus-17 for the game.

It was Thompson’s seventh consecutive game with at least 20 points.

Green’s line: Seven point (2-of-6, 1-of-4 from deep, 2-of-2 from the line), eight assists, seven rebounds and stellar defense on Harrison Barnes (2 points), Dirk Nowitzki and anyone else who got in the way. Green played 28 minutes and was plus-21.

After the Mavericks went up 37-32 on a jumper by Nowitzki with 9:37 left in the second quarter, the Warriors went on a searing 28-7 run to go up 60-44 on a Thompson 3-pointer with 55.4 seconds remaining in the half.

Clark, who scored 8 of the 28 points during the run, had 10 for the quarter.

The Warriors took a 62-50 lead into the half, and the Mavericks got no closer than 13 in the second half.

Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L knee sprain, tibial bone bruise) and F Andre Iguodala (L hip strain) were listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the NBA Development League.

Mavericks: No injuries listed. C A.J. Hammons and F Jarrod Uthoff were placed on the inactive list.

The Warriors return to action Friday night at Oracle Arena, where they play host to the Sacramento Kings. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:35 p.m.


Report: Rockets among teams interested in Jimmy Butler

Report: Rockets among teams interested in Jimmy Butler

Could Jimmy Butler go home to Houston?

Apparently, the Rockets are interested in trying to make it happen, though we're not sure how the numbers would work out.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Rockets, Nets, Pistons, Clippers, Heat, 76ers and Blazers are "interested in talking further with Minnesota" about trying to acquire the four-time All-Star. The Cavs are also interested acquiring Butler, according to Woj.

Houston has a problem, though. They are already $11.444 million over the luxury cap threshold. Butler is set to make $20.445 million in 2018-19 and $19.841 million in 2019-20, so the Rockets would have to do salary cap gymnastics to make a deal work.

On Friday, GM Daryl Morey told The Houston Chronicle that the Rockets are "doing what we can to prepare for" the Warriors.

Acquiring Butler would certainly fit that messaging.

Daryl Morey admits Rockets make most decisions with Warriors in mind


Daryl Morey admits Rockets make most decisions with Warriors in mind

Grass is green, the sky is blue, and Rockets general manager Daryl Morey is still obsessed with knocking off the Warriors.

Morey admitted as much in an interview with the Houston Chronicle, telling the paper that "a very high percentage" of the Rockets' decisions this offseason are made with one thing on their mind:

Same as last year, it's very likely to win the title we're going to have to beat the Warriors at some point. We're doing what we can to prepare for them. To me, that's what any rational person would do. I'm intrigued by some thinking it's odd that we say that. Maybe because it's not a norm. Ask any fan, 'Who do you have to beat to win the title?' They're going to say 'the Warriors.' It seems like [general manager] speak or coachspeak to not say that.

Morey told anybody who would ask last season that the Rockets were single-mindedly obsessed with beating the Warriors in the playoffs. Houston came close last season, jumping out to a 3-2 lead in the Western Conference finals, before Golden State stormed back to win the final two games in Rockets star Chris Paul's injury absence.

Morey responded with a substantial makeover of his roster. Defensive stoppers Luc Mbah a Moute and Trevor Ariza are gone, while Carmelo Anthony, Michael Carter-Williams, Marquese Chriss, James Ennis and Brandon Knight are in. The Rockets were one of the West's best defensive teams last season, and Morey expects the team to withstand the loss of Ariza and Mbah a Moute.

"We can be [as strong defensively]," Morey told the Chronicle. "They were both extremely good defenders. So it will be a challenge. That was a big part of our meeting. [Assistant coach Roy Rogers] was walking through what changes and how excited he was with what he was planning to do and the personnel we have to be better than last year."

Morey -- as well as the Warriors -- will get a first look at whether or not Houston's offseason was successful on Nov. 17, when the Rockets host the defending NBA champions.