In their final game of the regular season, the Golden State Warriors clinched the third seed in the Western Conference with a 120-100 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans. As was the case in Saturday’s win over the Spurs, the Dubs took advantage of playing an inferior opponent that is gearing up for the play-in tournament.
The Warriors had Klay Thompson back in the starting lineup after resting him against the Spurs on the first half of a back-to-back. Thompson needed 29 points to bring his average for the season north of 20, a mark he has beaten every season he’s played since 2013-14. He was clearly eyeing that number from the opening whistle. Thompson was aggressive throughout the game, scoring 12 points on 8 field-goal attempts in the first quarter.
Leading the Pelicans 27-26 after one quarter, the Dubs exploded in the second and left New Orleans behind. Jonathan Kuminga was a highlight machine and helped Golden State’s second unit to a fantastic quarter. Their bench was 8-for-8 from the field and helped put the Warriors ahead 68-48 at the half.
During the third quarter, the Warriors briefly lost focus, a common trend in recent games. The Pelicans went on a 22-4 run that cut the lead to 11, but the Dubs were ahead 89-76 to start the fourth quarter, and Thompson caught fire, quickly scoring 15 points and pushing the lead back out of reach.
Thompson’s final performance was the latest in a hot close to the season. He scored 41 points in just under 31 minutes of playing time. Thompson scored at least 33 points in 4 of his last 6 games this regular season and could be potentially rounding back into pre-injury form.
Jordan Poole added 22 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists, but did struggle to maintain possession (finishing with 5 turnovers). Kuminga was the only other Warrior in double-figures, scoring 18 points on 7-for-10 shooting.
The Warriors are finishing the regular season with a 53-29 record, their best since 2018-19. They now will enjoy a little time off before they face the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.
Join our postgame show over on Twitch hosted by our own Marc Delucchi: