Basketball / NBA

Stephen Curry's 37 lead Warriors past Blazers, to 2-0 lead

AP

These Golden State Warriors have long been able to score in fabulous, jaw-dropping flurries. Down by eight to the Portland Trail Blazers at home with 4½ minutes to go, they needed every last burst, perfect pass, driving layup and dunk.

“Our experience really paid off for us tonight having a bunch of guys who just won’t quit,” said Draymond Green, who was right smack in the middle of it all.

Stephen Curry scored 37 points, and the Warriors rallied from a 15-point halftime deficit before holding off Portland on the final possession for a 114-111 win Thursday night and a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference finals.

Golden State coach Steve Kerr insisted his team stole this game with a sensational final few minutes and another, familiar third-quarter outburst.

Counterpart Terry Stotts of the Trail Blazers considered it a “lost opportunity” on the road.

CJ McCollum missed a driving jumper with 32 seconds left and Green scored on the other end for the Warriors, giving Portland one final chance with 12.3 seconds to go. Andre Iguodala then blocked a 3-point attempt by Damian Lillard on the left wing.

“They stole it, but they earned it down the stretch,” McCollum said.

Seth Curry, Steph’s little brother, scored 16 points and put Portland ahead on a 3-pointer with 1:03 left before Kevon Looney’s dunk on the other end put Golden State back on top at 112-111.

Stephen Curry shot 11-for-22 and made all 11 of his free throws — three with 2:01 left — to post his third straight 30-point performance while Splash Brother Klay Thompson needed a half to heat up, scoring 13 of his 24 points in the Warriors’ 39-point third period. It was reminiscent of those old third-quarter runs that have defined this group.

McCollum scored 22 points for Portland and Lillard overcame a slow start to add 23 points and 10 assists as the Blazers looked far more in sync than in a 116-94 defeat two days earlier.

Game 3 in the best-of-seven series is Saturday night at Portland.

“We did play a much better game at both ends of the floor tonight. We’ve got to take that into Game 3,” Stotts said. “It is a lost opportunity, no question. We had a chance to get one here on the road.”

Green made a pretty bounce pass through the paint to a cutting Iguodala for a dunk with 3:06 left to make it 108-105, then Green assisted on a layup by Looney the next possession.

“Draymond’s been special all playoffs,” Thompson said. “. . . When he goes, we go. He was tremendous tonight.”

Green had 16 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists and five blocked shots playing with foul trouble.