Curry, Lee lead Warriors past Thunder 104-99

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 24, 2013 at 1:22 am •  Published: January 24, 2013
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OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Stephen Curry banked in an off-balance shot while getting fouled by Russell Westbrook to start a three-point play, falling to his knees and shaking his shoulders to the sellout crowd.

Not quite the shimmy Mark Jackson displayed during his playing days — still plenty good enough to please the Golden State coach.

Curry had 31 points and seven assists, and the Warriors punctuated the season's midpoint by outlasting the NBA-best Oklahoma City Thunder 104-99 in style Wednesday night.

"The way he's playing," Jackson said, "dance all you want."

On the eve of the announcement for All-Star reserves, Golden State's top two candidates made a lasting impression.

Curry matched Kevin Durant's spectacular scores all game, stole a pass from the Thunder's leading man in the final seconds and hit a pair of free throws to seal the Warriors' third straight victory. David Lee had 22 points and 12 rebounds, helped Golden State outrebound Oklahoma City's lengthy frontline 40-39 and made some big plays late.

The Warriors, with one playoff appearance since 1994, are 26-15 and own the fifth-best record in the Western Conference with another 41 games to play.

"I'm sure we're surprising people," Curry said.

Even Jackson, who doubles as a preacher, said he always had faith his team could win but "I get my praise and worship on because I didn't think it'd be this good," especially with center Andrew Bogut still sidelined indefinitely while recovering from left ankle surgery.

Durant had 33 points, nine assists and five rebounds, and Kevin Martin scored 16 points for the Thunder, who blew an eight-point lead in the fourth quarter a night after running away with a win at the Los Angeles Clippers. Oklahoma City (33-10) had won seven of eight but still remains at the top of the NBA standings.

"We could have been much better defensively," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. "They made a lot of plays inside the paint but they got a lot of points off of our turnovers, too. We didn't make enough plays down the stretch and they did. They deserved to win this game."

Once again, the Warriors showed they're no fluke out West this season.

Lee found Carl Landry slicing through the lane for a dunk, Klay Thompson hit a running hook as part of his 19 points and Landry put back his own miss to give Golden State a 97-94 lead with 2:25 remaining.

Kendrick Perkins tipped in a rebound on the other end before Jarrett Jack swished in a high-arching shot over Durant near the top of the key to put the Warriors ahead by three again. Durant answered back with a pair of free throws, only to watch Lee's layup extend Golden State's lead once more.

Durant hit one of two free throws to slice Golden State's lead to 101-99, then Curry missed an open 3-pointer to give the Thunder a chance with 17.5 seconds to play.

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