The Golden State Warriors went into the season finale in Portland still not knowing their playoff fate, with four games involving Western contenders starting simultaneously. Klay Thompson decided he didn’t want to wait.
Thompson hit four three-pointers in the first four minutes and the Warriors set an NBA record with 55 first quarter points as the Dubs cruised to a 157-101 win over the extremely short-handed Trail Blazers. It’s by far the largest margin of victory in the NBA this season, eclipsing the 45-point win by the New Orleans Pelicans over the resting Warriors in November.
All five of Klay's 3-pointers in the first quarter to reach 300 for the season ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/5RmmRpnJ0p— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 9, 2023
Klay hit his fifth three-pointer with 7:20 left in the first, giving him 300 triples on the season. He’s only the third player in NBA history to make that many, along with James Harden and, obviously, Steph Curry. (Curry finishes the regular season with only 273 threes. In 55 games.)
Normally, Jordan Poole’s four three-pointers in the first quarter would be amazing, but they were almost an afterthought in the offensive onslaught. As a team, the Warriors made 12-18 three-pointers, tying an NBA record for threes in a quarter.
They can't miss right now pic.twitter.com/gzLzEBYFAI— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 9, 2023
Sometimes the Warriors have had a habit of messing around on the road, or against bad teams, or both. That wasn’t a problem Sunday afternoon. After 12 minutes, the score was 55-27. Then they outscored the Blazers 34-20 in the third quarter, just in case their 31-point halftime lead wasn’t secure.
Thompson finished with 20 points in 22 minutes, on 6-11 shooting from deep. Curry had 26 points in 22 minutes, with seven assist, five rebounds, and just one turnover. Draymond Green had a pro-rated version of typical Draymond outing, notching nine points, four assists, two steals, and two blocks in 20 minutes.
The starters sat in the fourth quarter, but the reserves continued to pour it on, scoring 39 points in the final period. Moses Moody also lit it up from long range, making 4-5 three-pointers and continuing his late-season push to get into the playoff rotation. Moody finished +39 with 25 points in a team-high 29 minutes, while Poole also went 4-5 from deep and scored 21 points, and finished +31.
Moses Moody Makes the 3 to Give the Warriors 52 Points in the 1st Quarter Breaking the NBA's Record for Most Points in the 1st Quarer pic.twitter.com/Y2upD5XcR3— hoops bot (@hoops_bot) April 9, 2023
The Blazers were led by 19 points from Skylar Mays and 18 from rookie Shaedon Sharpe, but this was not a lineup of NBA players. Here are some of the players who took the court for Portland Sunday:
- Undrafted rookie Jeenathan Williams
- Former lottery pick Kevin Knox II (He shot 4-16)
- Justin Minaya, son of former New York Mets GM Omar Minaya, and a former member of Capitanes de Ciudad de Mexico
- Jabari Walker, son of Samaki Walker, and last year’s 57th pick in the draft.
- Chance Comanche, who is a six-year G League veteran, even though his name sounds like the secret identity of a DC hero.
But all the games count the same in the standings. And though it may have seemed impossible a few weeks ago, the Warriors ended the season with 11 road wins. If they can keep shooting this well, it won’t be their last one of the year.