Curry scores 36 points to lead Warriors past Magic
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Stephen Curry scored 36 points and delivered on key plays in the fourth quarter to help the Golden State Warriors snap a three-game losing streak with a 121-115 victory over the Orlando Magic on Tuesday night.
Curry scored or set up 13 straight Warriors points in a four-minute stretch late in the fourth quarter that proved to be the difference.
“Steph was amazing,” coach Steve Kerr said. “But Steph is always amazing. Even when he doesn’t score 36 points, just the attention he draws defensively, what he does to an opposing defense, the way he opens up the floor, he's a remarkable player. He really got himself going on a night when we needed it.”
“It was huge,” guard Chris Paul said. “We've been struggling to get wins. It’s hard to win in this league. That team is a young team, well coached. They've been playing hard all season long, so this was a good win for us.”
Curry hit two 3-pointers and assisted on two other baskets during a flurry midway through the third quarter that helped the Warriors build a small lead that the Magic were able to erase when he went bench for his second-half rest.
But Curry then took over down the stretch after returning with 8:33 to play. He scored on a drive to put Golden State up 101-97 and then hit a step-back 3-pointer on the next possession to make 104-97.
Curry added assists on back-to-back baskets by Thompson and Kuminga to make it 110-101 with 2:29 to play and the Warriors held on from there.
“They have an elite shot maker and Hall of Fame player in Steph Curry,” Magic coach Jamahl Mosley said. “That's what we got.”
The first half ended with excitement as Curry converted on a four-point play with 3.5 seconds remaining to put Golden State up 55-52. Gary Harris answered with a 3 at the buzzer to tie the game for Orlando.
The Warriors improved to 9-9 this season without suspended forward Draymond Green, who has missed the last 10 games for an indefinite suspension for hitting Phoenix center Jusuf Nurkic in the face. Kerr said before the game that he has been texting with Green but hasn't seen him in the team facility and has no date of a possible return.
“We’ve been giving him his space, he’s been giving us ours,” Kerr said.
The Warriors lost another key player when Gary Payton II injured his hamstring late in the third quarter and didn't return. Kerr had no update on the severity of the injury that came in Payton's second game back after missing a month with a calf injury.
“I feel bad for him more than anything,” Kerr said. “Feel bad for us too, but mainly for him. He’s been out four or five weeks. He worked hard to get back to this point. He makes such a big impact for us. Fingers crossed that he’s not out too long.”
Magic: Visit Sacramento on Wednesday night.
Warriors: Host Denver on Thursday night.
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