Not that the significance of a sport towards the Golden State Warriors actually wants a lot description, however San Antonio Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan nonetheless obliged following his crew’s 111-105 conquer the two-time defending champion.
“They’re the No. 1 crew in our convention,” DeRozan stated, “and we’re taking part in properly, too.”
The bit in regards to the Spurs taking part in properly? No query. Monday’s victory marked their ninth straight, simply the perfect stretch in what had been a decidedly un-Spurs-y season marked by mediocre protection and inconsistency. (Extra on that in a bit.)
However the Warriors as No. 1 within the West? Not anymore, with their loss and the Denver Nuggets’ 114-105 victory over the Boston Celtics deadlocking them atop the standings at 47-22.
The Spurs beat the Warriors for his or her ninth straight win.
OK, so the Warriors are technically nonetheless in first place due to their 2-1 sequence lead over the Nuggets. (The 2 groups play one closing time in Denver on April 2.)
That it is even that shut this late within the season feels substantial given Golden State’s superior firepower, with the offseason addition of DeMarcus Cousins seemingly sealing a 3rd straight title earlier than the 2018-19 marketing campaign tipped.
And whereas the playoffs are fully totally different beast, the Warriors should run the desk simply to hit the 60-win mark that had been a foregone conclusion.
Or so we thought.
Full credit score to the high-powered Nuggets for making it this fascinating, and looking out good whereas doing it. Driving one other superlative efficiency from All-Star middle Nikola Jokic (21 factors, 13 rebounds, 7 assists), they slugged the Celtics with a 16-2 run spanning the third and fourth quarters and principally cruised from there.
The Nuggets pull right into a tied atop the West with their win in Boston.
The Warriors, in the meantime, made a number of runs in San Antonio however, with Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant capturing a mixed 10 for 31 on Three-pointers, might by no means get fully over the hump. (It will have been even worse had Curry not banked in a 61-footer to finish the primary quarter, the fourth 50-plus foot shot of his profession.)
A lot of that needed to do with a Spurs crew that, after struggling for a lot of the season, has all of the sudden rediscovered the defensive prowess that has been an indicator of their success below coach Gregg Popovich.