The Warriors flexed their muscles in a 106-99 win over the Utah Jazz on Thursday that wasn't that close.
Stephen Curry led a charge that resulted in the Warriors outscoring the rising Jazz by 18 points in the first quarter. Curry finished the night with 26 points and five rebounds.
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To be fair, the Jazz, who had won seven of eight games heading into the tilt, fought back admirably after laying an egg early. Young center Rudy Gobert finished with a monster double-double of 20 points and 17 rebounds, and Joe Ingles notched 21 points off the bench.
In the end, the Warriors had too much firepower. Draymond Green, who briefly left the game to tend to a bum ankle, returned to record a near triple-double. He finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.
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One game Klay Thompson goes off for 60, the next Curry leads. Then Kevin Durant goes off, or Green leads the way. Cleveland may have the best "Big Three" in the league, but Golden State's "Big Four" will be tough to beat in the postseason.
Studs of the Night
A trio of stars helped the Raptors beat the Timberwolves 124-110 despite trailing by 10 after the first quarter. DeMar DeRozan led the way, as he so often does, with 27 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Kyle Lowry got hot in the second half to finish with 25 points and 11 assists. Jonas Valanciunas scored 20 points and hauled in 10 rebounds.
76ers power forward Ersan İlyasova, who is quietly putting together a career season, continued his stellar play by scoring 23 points with eight rebounds and four assists in a 99-88 win over the Pelicans in New Orleans.
Dud of the Night
Trail Blazers star point guard Damian Lillard scored just 19 points on 6-of-18 shooting in his team's 88-86 loss to the Grizzlies. Lillard entered the game on the heels of two straight 30-point efforts, but he was unable to duplicate his success against Memphis' stingy defense.
Someone has to block out Karl-Anthony Towns:
Towns finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds in the Wolves' loss.
Raptors (15-7) at Celtics (13-9), 7:30 p.m. ET — Lowry and DeRozan head to Boston to take on Isaiah Thomas and a finally settled-in Al Horford, who has played in just 12 games this season. These are the top two teams behind the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference, but neither has had much success against the reigning champs.