Golden State Warriors (63-14) vs. New Orleans Pelicans (41-35)
Smoothie King Center - New Orleans, LA.
5:00 pm (PST) Tipoff
(TV) CSN-Bay Area
(Radio) KNBR 1050 AM
Buddy Blog: The Bird Writes
After getting their 12 game winning streak snapped in San Antonio, the Warriors look to rebound against the Pelicans Tuesday night in New Orleans. The matchup presents a possible first round playoff series, as the Pelicans are currently half a game behind the Oklahoma City Thunder for the 8th seed in the ultra competitive Western Conference.
While the Pelicans will have their hands full with the Warriors, Oklahoma City will play host to San Antonio Tuesday night. The Thunder have lost three in a row and five of their last six games, as the Pelicans seem to be trending in the opposite direction by winning four out of their last five games.
As for a possible first round matchup, there is no high road for top seeded Golden State in the Western Conference. Both Oklahoma City (Russel Westbrook) and New Orleans (Anthony Davis) feature superstar players who have had MVP type seasons. The Thunder seem to control their own destiny, as only two of their remaining five games this season are against playoff teams, while the Pelicans will play four out of their remaining six games against teams who will make the playoffs.
While the Warriors have been praised of late for winning games that have been deemed more important to their opponents, the Dubs got taken behind the woodshed Sunday afternoon by a seasoned Spurs squad who are peaking at the right time. The Warriors will not be the only team looking to avenge a loss Tuesday night, as the Pelicans were defeated by the Portland Trail Blazers in their last game on Saturday, 99-90.
Golden State won the last matchup between these two teams back in March, with a 112-96 victory at Oracle Arena, and have won 12 straight overall against New Orleans. Harrison Barnes posted his consecutive 20 point game for the first time in his career, as Klay Thompson sat out with an ankle injury. New Orleans hobbled into the last contest against the Dubs, as Anthony Davis, Omer Asik, Jrue Holiday and Ryan Anderson all did not play.
The Warriors head into New Orleans with the best road record in the NBA at 28-12, but a victory over one of the top teams in the league could be a pivotal missing piece to the Pelicans playoff puzzle. New Orleans will need all hands on deck, as the Warriors have averaged 117 points per game in their three match ups with the Pelicans this season.
Jrue Holiday will sit out Tuesday night with a leg injury for the Pelicans and Shaun Livingston will return for the Warriors after a one game suspension by the NBA. With Holiday out, the Pelicans will need a big game out of Eric Gordon who is averaging 11 points per game on 43 percent shooting from three point range this season at home.
MVP Candidates: Tale of the Tape
And in case you missed the last game between the Warriors and Pelicans, you can watch the full highlights here: