NBA | Stephen Curry brilliance leads Warriors to victory over Knicks; Lakers edge past Celtics in one-point thriller

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NBA | Stephen Curry brilliance leads Warriors to victory over Knicks; Lakers edge past Celtics in one-point thriller

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SportsCafe Desk

01/24/2018

Stephen Curry was absolutely brilliant against New York Knicks and with 32 points, he helped Golden State Warriors increase their home record to 21-6. In another game at the Staples Center, a Lonzo Ball-less Los Angeles Lakers managed to eke out a one-point win against a sublime Boston Celtics.

Golden State Warriors 123 – 112 New York Knicks

Despite the absence of star centre Kristaps Porzingis, who was out of the game due to a knee niggle, the Knicks started the game on a positive note at the Oracle Arena, much to the dismay of the local Warrior fans. The visitors, taking the benefits of initial burst, build up a 10-point lead and eventually managed to score 60 points in the first-half. The Knicks managed to connect on 51.8 percent of their shots from the floor and 5-of-12 behind the arc in the first two quarters to take the advantage into the second half. While three Knicks players registered double figures in the first half, the home stars struggle was evident as even the “Splash Brothers” Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson couldn’t find their shooting touch with ease, combinedly securing a total of 12 points in the first half. However, a combined team effort in the second quarter and a bit sloppiness by the Knicks, helped the Dubs get near of Knicks’ first-half score as the half-time ended with a score of 60-58.  

If anyone would have thought that this would have yet another loss for the Warriors at home – the team actually have a better on-the-road record than at home – the hots fought on the even terms in the next quarters and eventually, took the lead at 68-66 thanks to a Zaza Pachulia free-throw. Then, Curry decided to showcase his brilliance and there was no way of stopping for him. With Kevin Durant not being able to score as per the expectations, despite having 14 assists to his game, Curry kept Warriors’ lead intact for the remainder of the contest and received good support from Pachulia helped him with scoring in the third quarter. In the third quarter alone, the 29-year-old scored 18 of the total 32 points he scored in the game to lead the Warriors to 100 or more points for a 14th straight game. For Knicks, Michael Beasley tried hard to restore the advantage to secure the victory by scoring a team-high of 21 points while managing to dish out four assists and four rebounds at the starting power forward position. However, all his efforts rendered ineffective as the Warriors scampered home by 11 points before hosting Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday in a bid to secure a fourth straight home win in the series and third overall.

Los Angeles Lakers 108-107 Boston Celtics

The Lakers, who were tested to the limit by the New York Knicks in the first quarter in their last assignment, again didn’t get any leeway by the visiting Boston Celtics as Kyrie Irving again gave the Celtics a good start by putting up drives, jump shots, and even from the perimeter. Although the hosts went neck-to-neck for most parts of the first half, Celtics were just better and ended the quarter with a six-point lead at 21-15. Despite Kyle Kuzma trying his best with two three-pointers, Celtics were just better and added points for fun as the team opened up a seven-point lead at 27–20. The game had seen ebbs and flows throughout the second quarter and eventually, Celtics ended the half with an eight-point with the scorecard reading 53–45. 

The hosts, however, were not done and staged a brilliant fight back in the third quarter and outscored the Celtics 31-21. Brook Lopez led the battle in the penultimate quarter despite Al Horford giving Celtics a good enough chance to stay in the game. However, the third quarter ended with Lakers leading the game by two points with the score being 76-74. The game was still on even terms in the final quarter in which Kuzma decided to put forward his best offensive game of the month and during a three and half-minute of play in the fourth quarter, he scored 13 points and was successful in giving a behind-the-back assist to Larry Nance Jr. for a dunk. Although Irving managed to help the Celtics keep up with the game, Kuzma and Julius Randle came up with big baskets on offensive rebounds before Marcus Smart hit two free throws for Boston. However, Smart’s three-pointer proved to be the eventual result in the game as the Lakers secured a one-point victory before playing Chicago Bulls on Friday in what will be the opener of their a five-game road trip.

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