Warriors gunning for Bulls' record

Golden State's Stephen Curry taking on Los Angeles Clippers' Jamal Crawford in Oakland on Wednesday. The Warriors' 114-98 win was their 51st consecutive regular-season home victory and improved their mark to 64-7.
Golden State's Stephen Curry taking on Los Angeles Clippers' Jamal Crawford in Oakland on Wednesday. The Warriors' 114-98 win was their 51st consecutive regular-season home victory and improved their mark to 64-7. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

They need 9 wins from their last 11 games and won't ease up to prepare for NBA play-offs

TORONTO • Defending champions Golden State Warriors are closing in on the best record in National Basketball Association (NBA) history and the team have every intention of pursuing the mark rather than resting players in preparation for another Finals push.

Golden State (64-7) are a game ahead of the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls' pace in their 72-10 campaign and, after weeks of evasion, their coach Steve Kerr has declared his team's plan for the final 11 games of the regular season.

"It's really the players' record. I know they want to get it. So we'll act accordingly," he said.

On Wednesday, Golden State won their 51st consecutive regular-season home game and improved to 33-0 this season at Oracle Arena.

Despite rolling through the season, they have work to do to hold off the San Antonio Spurs (60-11) and secure the top seed in the Western Conference and home-court advantage through the NBA Finals should they make it that far.

While there are risks to chasing a record that guarantees nothing for the play-offs, Kerr called the opportunity "enticing" and said he has no intention of having the Warriors ease up.

  • Golden State's final 1 1 games

  • • Yesterday: v Dallas

    • Sunday: v Philadelphia

    • March 29: v Washington

    • March 30: at Utah

    • April 1: v Boston

    • April 3: v Portland

    • April 5: v Minnesota

    • April 7: v San Antonio

    • April 9: at Memphis

    • April 10: at San Antonio

    • April 13: v Memphis

Golden State are led by reigning NBA Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. While Kerr admitted that some players could use some mental rest, he will not get in the way of their shot at history.

"If the players want to go and they're fine physically, we'll probably play them," said Kerr, who was a reserve player on the 1995-96 Bulls record-breaking team who went on to win the NBA championship.

"Fortunately right now that goal of going for the No. 1 seed goes hand in hand with the record that everyone wants to talk about, so we are able to just keep trying to win."

Players on the team are eager to enter the play-offs at the top of their game with a winning mentality rather than risk getting out of sync.

Curry, who is averaging a league-high 30.1 points per game this season, said sitting out and watching games is "boring" and that he has no plans of taking a break.

"We don't want to limp into the play-offs," said Curry, who has started all but three of Golden State's games this season. "We want to continue to establish winning habits and a winning mentality as you go into the play-offs."

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 26, 2016, with the headline 'WARRIORS GUNNING FOR BULLS' RECORD'. Print Edition | Subscribe