Basketball: Golden State Warriors back on track

Golden State complete a 3-game road trip, winning the last 2 by more than 30 points

CHICAGO • The Golden State Warriors have returned to winning ways in their season of dominance.

After starting a three-game road trip against a trio of top Eastern Conference teams with a humbling loss to the Detroit Pistons, the defending National Basketball Association (NBA) champions won their past two games by more than 30 points.

The Warriors defeated the Chicago Bulls 125-94 on Wednesday at the United Centre to follow a 34-point win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday.

"We just got back into who we are as a team and put together two pretty solid 40-minute performances, and that's what we expect," said guard Stephen Curry, who led the way with 25 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds.

"You're going to have nights like the Detroit game, but good teams bounce back quick, and we were able to do that."

It took a few minutes, but the Warriors (39-4) rolled once they got their offence going.

All 13 Warriors scored and six finished in double figures.

Golden State's Draymond Green (left) putting up a shot over Chicago's E'Twaun Moore at the United Centre. The Warriors defeated the Bulls 125-94.
Golden State's Draymond Green (left) putting up a shot over Chicago's E'Twaun Moore at the United Centre. The Warriors defeated the Bulls 125-94. PHOTO: AGENCEFRANCE-PRESSE

Along with Curry, guard Klay Thompson (20 points) and forward Harrison Barnes (19) reached double digits, as well as reserve guards Leandro Barbosa (12) and Shaun Livingston (12) and backup swingman Andre Iguodala (10).

Guard Derrick Rose led all scorers with 29 points, and guard Jimmy Butler added 23 points for the Bulls.

It marked the first time this campaign that a starting back-court outscored Curry and Thompson (52-45) but it could not prevent the Bulls from getting swept by Golden State in the two-game season series.

Chicago (24-17) also got double-figure scoring off the bench from rookie forward Bobby Portis (16 points) and guard E'Twaun Moore (13).

"It's embarrassing," Rose said.

"We stopped communicating while we were out there. You could easily tell there was no communication on both sides of the ball.

"The only thing we can do from it is learn."

Golden State trailed through the game's first four minutes, but they used a 11-4 run to seize the lead and never trailed again.

Just past the halfway point in the NBA season, Golden State is on track to surpass the NBA record of 72 wins set in 1995-96 by the Bulls, who were led by Michael Jordan.

"We've got a lot of games left," Golden State interim coach Luke Walton said.

"It's a long season and with (39 games) left, I'm not thinking about that."

A couple of Warriors players, however, were thinking about that era of Bulls basketball prior to the game.

Chicago still uses the same entrance music as back in Jordan's era, which got Curry and forward Draymond Green fired up.

"It's exciting and it's always fun to come here and play," said Green, who had six points, 10 rebounds and nine assists despite leaving the game in the second half after getting hit in the eye.

"You hear that (song), and you just think back to those days watching Jordan and 'Space Jam', and all that stuff."

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 22, 2016, with the headline 'Warriors back on track'. Print Edition | Subscribe