The Warriors learned just minutes before playing the Denver Nuggets, who Golden State beat 116-112, in the regular-season finale that they’ll take on the Los Angeles Clippers, a team they are quite familiar with.
Game 1 of the playoff series is set for Saturday at 12:30 p.m. at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Game 2 is Monday in L.A. before the series shifts back to Oakland for Games 3 and 4 on April 24 and April 27, respectively.
The Warriors and Clippers split their regular-season series 2-2 this season and have developed a serious distaste for one another. A Christmas night game between the two featured multiple ejections.
The matchup wasn’t even set on Wednesday afternoon when guard Klay Thompson told 95.7 FM (KGMZ) that Clippers star forward Blake Griffin can get under people’s skin.
“He’s kind of like a bull in a china shop, kind of out of control sometimes,” said during the radio interview. “And then you do just see him flop sometimes. Like, how can a guy that big and strong flop that much?”
As for Wednesday’s game, Jordan Crawford scored a career-high 41 points and Harrison Barnes added 30 as the Warriors rested all of most of their starters. Crawford beat his previous career high of 39 points set against Miami on March, 30, 2011, when he was with Washington. He surpassed it with a runner that put the Warriors ahead for good at 110-108.
With 30 seconds left, Barnes sank a free throw and Draymond Green swooped in to tip in his errant second shot, giving the Warriors a 113-108 lead.
Crawford and Steve Blake each missed a free throw over the next 14 seconds, giving the Nuggets an opening. Green was whistled for goal-tending on Foye’s 3-pointer with seven seconds left but the call was overturned upon review, leaving the Nuggets trailing 115-112.
NOTE: Warriors TV analyst Jim Barnett was supposed to retire after this season, but he will return next year in a limited capacity, the Bay Area News Group reported. The 69-year-old Barnett is finishing up his 29th year as a Warriors broadcaster.
— Staff, wire report