ATLANTA – The Golden State Warriors reached 50 wins faster than any team in NBA history.
Doesn’t mean more than that to this group.
With their eyes on more than regular-season records, the Warriors improved to 50-5 as Stephen Curry scored 36 points and Golden State bounced back after squandering a 23-point lead to beat the Atlanta Hawks 102-92 on Monday night.
The Warriors eclipsed the mark set by the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls, who needed one more game to win their 50th. Of course, that’s the team Golden State is chasing, moving another step closer to the record 72-10 mark put up by Michael Jordan & Co. at the height of their six-titles-in-eight-years dynasty.
“Fifty wins is great,” Curry said, “but we’ve got to keep plugging away and staying hungry, because nobody wants to talk about that in June.”
Curry and the defending NBA champions appeared headed for a rout against the struggling Hawks, pushing out to a 70-47 lead approaching the midway point of the third quarter. Atlanta closed the period on a 28-6 run and grabbed the lead briefly early in the fourth, igniting the sellout crowd.
But the Warriors would not be denied, bouncing back to hand the Hawks their fourth straight home loss.
“I liked our response,” coach Steve Kerr said. “They were on fire in their home building. Everything was going against us, and we maintained our poise and pulled away down the stretch. It was a really good win.”
Klay Thompson added 27 points for the Warriors. Both he and Curry knocked down five shots from 3-point range. Draymond Green didn’t do much offensively, scoring only six points, but he had 14 rebounds and nine assists.
Al Horford led the Hawks with 23 points.
“The third quarter is something we can hopefully build off of,” said Atlanta coach Mike Budenholzer, whose team had the top record in the Eastern Conference a year ago but has slipped all the way to sixth this season.
Curry put on a clinic in the first half, thoroughly dominating Hawks point guard Jeff Teague.
Pistons 96, Cavaliers 88
In Cleveland, Reggie Jackson scored 23 points, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 19 and Detroit withstood the Cavaliers’ late comeback to snap a five-game losing streak.
Heat 101, Pacers 93 (OT)
In Miami, Goran Dragic scored 24 points, Hassan Whiteside finished with 19 points and 18 rebounds, and the Heat won their third consecutive game since the All-Star break, rallying from 14 points down to beat Indiana in overtime.
Raptors 122, Knicks 95
In New York, Kyle Lowry had 22 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists for his first triple-double of the season, DeMar DeRozan also scored 22 while becoming the winningest player in Raptors history, and Toronto whipped the Knicks.
Timberwolves 124, Celtics 122
In Minneapolis, Karl-Anthony Towns had 28 points, 13 rebounds and four assists, and the hosts outlasted Boston.
Bucks 108, Lakers 101
In Milwaukee, Giannis Antetokounmpo had 27 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, and the Bucks beat Los Angeles in retiring star Kobe Bryant’s last trip to the Bradley Center.
Clippers 124, Suns 84
In Los Angeles, J.J. Redick scored 22 points and the Clippers handed Phoenix its 12th consecutive loss.