Warriors cut down Blazers, Westbrook runs out of gas

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) reacts after scoring against the Portland Trail Blazers during the second half of Game 1 of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, April 16, 2017.

The Golden State Warriors didn't replace Kevin Durant when he missed Game 2 against the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday.

"It's not worth it", Warriors Coach Steve Kerr said before Wednesday's game of possibly playing Durant.

You may recall the Warriors reached agreement with veteran point guard Jose Calderon two days before Durant went down on February 28. He missed 19 games with a strained MCL and bone bruise on his left leg, and now, you can add strained calf to the list of ailments that Durant is battling through. Draymond Green had six points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists. He is dealing with a right index finger sprain and a hand contusion after scoring just two points in 15 minutes in Game 1.

"We all should be so lucky to have 'Others, ' right?" said Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry, a former Warriors top assistant. But I'm getting better every day.

But as we all saw during Game 7 of the Finals a year ago, Kerr really sticks to his guns when it comes to minutes, and if he wasn't willing to go all out then, it's tough to imagine him doing it in the first round.

The Warriors are 5-0 ATS in their last five road games, 21-7 ATS in their last 28 Conference Quarterfinals games and 13-3-1 ATS in their last 17 games overall.

The Warriors move to Portland for the next two games, and even if they don't have Durant for both of them, they should be favored to complete the sweep with the way the first two have gone. Like Durant, he is considered a game-time decision.

"Coming in the first two games we just wanted to take one", Lillard said. The play went to review and was ruled a common foul.

They take great pride in their roles of spelling KD, Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson while maintaining a high level of play. The Warriors won the last 13 games that Durant missed, and the forward's absence might not make much of a difference in Game 2. A minor situation would have quickly turned serious if Durant played and did any further damage to the injury.

"The main thing I liked was the fact that he was unafraid", Kerr said. So, the final result of the Game 1 between Blazers vs Warriors is 109-121. The Warriors did not let Lillard or CJ McCollum get clean looks. It seemed like a unusual comment, given Golden State's defensive performance the past three years but, even more so, after their first half defensive performance.

While the Warriors struggled initially with Durant sidelined, they also produced a 14-game winning streak and locked up the NBA's best record for a third straight year. Golden State led by 25 and the game was essentially over. According to ESPN Stats & Info, just one of their combined 34 field-goal attempts in Game 2 was uncontested.

  • Julie Sanders