Because the Warriors have Kevin Durant. As the broadcast pointed out, this is only the eighth game Durant has played in the last two months.
Kevin Durant scored 38 points and Golden State Warriors withstood a determined Utah Jazz effort to win 102-91 on Saturday to take a commanding 3-0 lead in their National Basketball Association playoff series.
Every night, it seems to be someone different that gives the Warriors the spark to pull away from their competition. The total hit the betting board at 209 has dropped a full point to 208.
Scoring a game-high 38 points - 13 in the opening quarter - grabbing a team-high 13 rebounds and engaging Jazz center Rudy Gobert in the briefest of shoving matches in the final minutes of the game, Durant delivered on the vision shared by coach Steve Kerr, general manager Bob Myers and CEO Joe Lacob. Steph Curry didn't hit his first 3 until late in the third quarter and missed 10 shots in a row at one point.
Game 3 was certainly the most competitive one yet for the Jazz in this series of double-digit losses. Durant's already the league's best scorer. Now, as they steamroll through the playoffs, the Warriors are making sure not to hurt themselves. The Warriors are going to put up points - even against the regular-season's best defense- so Utah needs to find more offense to be competitive. They can thank Kevin Durant for the victory. He took over when his star teammates struggled.
Against the Jazz, the Warriors have posted 32 and 33 assists in the first two games. While a lot of credit should go to Shelvin Mack for his dogged defense, Curry can not afford to have an off-night when he is lucky enough to get to go against backup point guards all night long. When I try to do the other things.
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This series isn't over, but Utah is quickly running out of answers. He didn't travel to Salt Lake City and has been out since Game 3 of the first-round series against the Portland Trail Blazers. Golden State has assisted on 79 percent of all its field goals in this series and 69 percent of its field goals in the entire postseason.
After the game, Warriors interim coach Mike Brown said that a game like this is "one of the reasons" they brought KD in.
Golden State's ability to shift the offensive strategy wouldn't be possible if not for Curry's willingness to slide into more of a sidekick role, which he did in the fourth quarter as Durant accumulated a usage percentage of 43.5, compared to Curry's 31.8. The Warriors are in Utah tonight to take on a Jazz team they totally outclassed over the first two games in Oakland. Golden State had just 17. Game 4 is Monday in Utah.
The Warriors managed to take a 72-70 lead into the fourth quarter despite shooting just 8-of-24 from the field in the third. They looked like last year's team, as Durant sat on the bench.
It didn't matter who was on the court, they were switching and absolutely hounding the Jazz.
Jazz injury report: SG Alec Burks (left knee) is out. During the second quarter, ABC provided a graphic that showed the Warriors had lead for over 108 minutes, Utah lead for 0, and the game was tied for 3:44 for the entire series up to that point. The Jazz on the other hand will look to save their season in front of their home fans, looking to extend it to a Game 5. Over the final 19:28 of the game, the Warriors went on a 40-28 run to close out the game.