Banged-up Warriors go small, overpower Mavericks 147-116
DALLAS (AP) — With no traditional center available, the Golden State Warriors’ “dearth lineup” proved more than enough Thursday night.
Kelly Oubre Jr. scored a career-high 40 points, Stephen Curry had 28 and the Warriors went small in a runaway win, beating the Dallas Mavericks 147-116 in the first of a two-game series.
Draymond Green had 11 points and a season-high 15 assists as a makeshift center, helping Golden State get by without using any player taller than 6-foot-7 forward Andrew Wiggins due to injuries. The Warriors outscored Dallas 54-36 in the paint and outrebounded the Mavs 45-42.
“It felt a lot like summer league,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said of the game’s frenetic pace. “I think I only called plays out of timeouts. It was like the ‘Run TMC’ days. I just needed my fish tie.”
Golden State took control late in the third quarter after a floater by Tim Hardaway Jr. pulled the Mavericks within 93-91 with 5:52 left in the period. The Warriors went on a 17-4 run mixing outside shooting and attacks on the rim and led 110-96 after three.
With Curry and Green on the bench during the first half of the fourth quarter, Golden State went on a 17-7 run to put the game away. Dallas trailed 130-105 with 5:35 to play when coach Rick Carlisle emptied his bench.
The 147 points were a season best for Golden State and the most allowed this year by Dallas. The win puts the Warriors, looking to return to the playoffs after last season’s last-place finish the West, in a tie for eighth place with San Antonio.
Luka Doncic led the Mavericks with 27 points. Kristaps Porzingis had 25, Hardaway added 19 and Jalen Brunson 18 off the bench. Dallas came off a Wednesday night win at Atlanta that snapped a six-game losing streak and has lost six straight home games.
The Mavericks shot 51.1% during the first half with 15 3-pointers, which tied a franchise record for a half, then hit only 31.9% during the second and scored 20 points in each of the last two periods.
“This was a difficult lesson,” Carlisle said.
The Warriors dressed nine players and played without both players who have started at center this season — James Wiseman (sprained left wrist) and Kevon Looney (sprained left ankle) — and also without power forward Eric Paschall (woke up Thursday with a swollen knee).
Golden State used power forward Green in the middle and turned to Juan Toscano-Anderson to make this third start up front and ninth appearance this season. Toscano-Anderson scored 14 points, two shy of his career high.
Dallas led 76-74 at halftime, falling one point short of its high scoring half of the season while the Warriors set a season best for a half.
Warriors: Oubre shot 7 for 10 behind the arc. ... Wiggins hit 5 of 6 shots in the second half after going 2 for 12 in the first.
Mavericks: Porzingis played back-to-back games for the second time in four opportunities this season in his return from knee surgery in October. ... Dallas began a seven-game homestand, its longest of the season’s first half.
DEALING WITH GREEN
Green fell one assist short of tying his career record. Carlisle called him “a point guard, an unusual point guard-power forward.”
Green missed much of training camp after testing positive for the coronavirus and then sat out the first four games with a foot injury.
“He’s feeling better, in much better shape,” Kerr said.
The teams will meet again on Saturday night in Dallas.
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