Warriors close season with a win. Bring on the Kings (in a week)!
WAS THERE EVER ANY DOUBT?
The Golden State Warriors finished the year strong, closing out the tanking Portland Trail Blazers and setting up a first round playoff matchup against the Sacramento Kings. Coming in, the Warriors knew they wanted a win in order to control their destiny to the extent possible this late in the season. There were a lot of reasons that the regular season record came down to the wire like it did today, but Golden State left no doubt that they mean business.
That first quarter was a wild one - even by the loftiest of Warriors’ standards. 55 points (setting a new NBA record for most in a first quarter) and 12 threes (tying the record for most in a quarter). With Portland resting large swaths of their roster, it was an assertive statement from the Warriors that they are fully engaged and in playoff mode.
Thompson did indeed get to 300 three-pointers, becoming the third player - along with Stephen Curry and some guy equally famous for a beard and his free throws - to accomplish the achievement.
157-101 was the final score. A resounding victory that launches Golden State into a title defense that starts against the Sacramento Kings.
Next up: the NBA play-in tournament. Starting Tuesday, there will be three nights of games throughout the week that will formally set the 7th and 8th seeds in each conference on Friday.
The delay will give Golden State some much-needed time to rest and prepare for what is sure to be an extremely difficult push through the playoffs. Andrew Wiggins has begin to play 5-on-5 scrimmages, but the full week off to get the team on the court and running plays again is most welcome.
Whew. What a wild ride. But in the end, the Warriors made it back to the playoffs. There’s no easy path, but there is a path to defending their title - and that’s all they’ve asked for all season.