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Steph Curry’s 48 leads Warriors past Mavs in thriller

Golden State squeaked out a 119-114 victory in Dallas, in an exciting back-and-forth affair.

New York Knicks v Golden State Warriors Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

24 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, and 5 triples is a pretty darn good night for an NBA player. So is 17 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 blocks.

Those are the respective stat lines for Steph Curry and Kevin Durant on Sunday, when the Golden State Warriors took on the up-and-coming Dallas Mavericks.

Those are the first half stat lines, I should say.

The beauty of having superstars is that, well, they’re super. And they’re stars. And sometimes that’s exactly what you need to win a game.

Dallas was ready for the star-studded machine that is Golden State, as they’ve been ready all year. The Warriors won 119-114, and the five point difference was the largest point differential in any of the three matchups between these teams. It felt a bit like a playoff game.

And a large part of that was the individual performances. Curry put the team on his back, not only keeping them in the game early, when most of the team was struggling, but pushing them over the hump when they trailed late in the fourth quarter.

His final line: 48 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 17-32 shooting, 11-19 from beyond the arc, and a stern reminder that he deserves to be in the MVP discussion.

The Warriors needed all 48 of his points, as they trailed in the final minutes. Points 44, 45, and 46 broke a tie with under a minute to play. Points 47 and 48 iced the game with a handful of seconds remaining.

There were a few concerning elements - Dallas shot 29 free throws to Golden State’s 12, and while you can point a finger at the refs a little, the disparity was emblematic of a defense that was a second late and quick to swipe, and an offense that too often was comfortable moving backwards rather than forwards (which was perfectly acceptable in Curry’s case). No one could slow down Luka Doncic, who had 28 points of his own. Klay Thompson returned to his early season ways, shooting just 2-11 from deep, and at times appearing to force the issue.

But as it has so often in the past, Curry’s brilliance erased all manner of sins, and 28 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocks from Durant didn’t exactly hurt, either.

It hasn’t been the season the Warriors were expecting, but suddenly their offense is clicking, they’ve won four in a row, and DeMarcus Cousins will be back in five days.

Don’t look now, but here they come. Let’s roll some highlights, and enjoy your Sunday evening.

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