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Draymond Green triple-double leads Golden State past Denver
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OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Draymond Green’s putback with 28.9 seconds left gave him the final rebound for his second triple-double of the season, and he finished with 15 points, 13 assists and 10 boards to lead the balanced Golden State Warriors past the Denver Nuggets 127-119 on Monday night.
Klay Thompson had 25 points to lead six Warriors in double figures, while Stephen Curry scored 22 points in Golden State’s eighth straight home victory.
Kevin Durant scored 21 points, Zaza Pachulia reached double digits for the third time with 11 points and nine rebounds, while Ian Clark came off the bench to score 12 points.
The Warriors reached 30 assists for the third straight game and NBA-best 24th time total.
Wilson Chandler and Nikola Jokic scored 21 points apiece to lead Denver, which matched the star-studded Warriors for most of the first half. Golden State shot 56.3 percent and the Nuggets 54.2.
Chandler’s 3-pointer with 8:13 to play cut the Golden State lead to 104-98 before Andre Iguodala dunked on the other end moments later.
Curry had seven 3s in the last meeting against Denver on Nov. 10, but went 3 for 9 from long range. He moved into sole possession of 15th place in NBA history for career 3-pointers (1,722), passing Dale Ellis (1,719).
Defending the 3-point line was a top priority for Denver.
“You have three guys in Curry, Thompson and Durant that can all go off for 40, 50 or 60,” said coach Michael Malone, a former Warriors assistant.
Durant’s 763 points in 33 games against the Nuggets is his highest total versus any opponent.
Both teams put on an offensive show during a fantastic first half in which they were shooting at least 62.5 percent until midway through the second quarter.
A 7-3 Warriors burst from 4:54 gave Golden State a 60-55 lead and was punctuated by Green’s one-handed slam at the 3:42 mark that sent the fans into a frenzy.
Green also made a pretty pass to Durant for a dunk, then Durant swished a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer with a defender in his face for a 68-64 lead. The Warriors hit 8 of 14 first-half 3s.
The Nuggets last played at Oracle Arena exactly a year ago on Jan. 2, 2016, losing 111-108 in overtime.
Nuggets: Denver’s Kenneth Faried — who was taken off the court on a stretcher with a neck brace to stabilize him in Oakland a year ago immediately after his team’s loss here — didn’t play this time because of lower back pain. ... Darrell Arthur also was sidelined for Denver because of left knee soreness. ... Malone joked pregame when asked about his biggest concerns with the Warriors, “all of the above.” ... Denver HAD gone 9-12 at Golden State since the start of the 2003-04 season.
Warriors: Green had his 10th game with at least 10 assists, and the Warriors are 10-0 when he does so. ... JaVale McGee had his 49th and 50th dunks in the first quarter. ... Golden State has won five in a row at home vs. Denver. ... Rookie Patrick McCaw was out again with flu-like symptoms. He did go through some of shootaround earlier in the day.
Nuggets: Host Sacramento on Tuesday to complete a back-to-back. It’s the first meeting between the teams after the Kings won all three last season.
Warriors: Host Trail Blazers on Wednesday after Portland took a 135-90 beating in its last visit to Oracle Arena on Dec. 17 for the Warriors’ largest margin of victory in the rivalry.