BOSTON (AP) — Kevin Durant deflected a Boston pass, tipped it ahead to Stephen Curry and ran to the basket to finish off an alley-oop.
The next time down, Curry stole the ball and pulled up for a 3-pointer.
What had been a seven-point Golden State halftime lead was now a 22-point blowout. And the fans who booed Durant before the game for spurning their city were turning against their own team.
“That was incredible to start the half off that way,” forward Draymond Green said after the Warriors went on a 24-3 run to start the third quarter and held on for a 104-88 victory over Boston on Friday night. “That was amazing.”
Klay Thompson scored 28 points, Durant had 23 points and 10 rebounds and the Warriors scored 18 in a row in the third quarter to blow the game open. Curry had just 16 points — his second-fewest of the season — while sitting out much of the fourth as Golden State held on for its sixth straight victory.
“They’re really good, and we all know that. But you just can’t have droughts against them,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said. “They can make it a landslide quickly. Going six straight possessions without scoring, that just crushes you.”
The Celtics signed Al Horford over the summer and courted Durant, too, even bringing along Patriots quarterback Tom Brady to meet with the free agent in the Hamptons. But they were unable to land the former Oklahoma City star, and the Boston fans remembered.
Durant was greeted with loud boos before the game and often when he touched the ball.
“It’s just the beer talking,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr said.
“They come to enjoy the show. There’s no hard feelings,” Durant said. “I’ve still got love for Boston, I still love playing here. You have one of the best crowds in the league. That’s what they’re supposed to do.”
Avery Bradley had 17 points and 10 rebounds and Isaiah Thomas scored a season-low 18 for Boston, which challenged the Warriors last season while they were on their way to a record-breaking 73-9 regular season. After losing in double overtime in Boston, the Celtics beat the Warriors on April 1 to hand them their first home loss of the season.
But this one was over during a third quarter in which Golden State outscored the home team 31-9. Boston shot 2 for 17 in the period and turned the ball over five times.
Thomas hit a 3-pointer early in the third quarter to make it a 10-point game, but the Warriors scored the next 18 points. They made it 86-57 at the end of the third and opened a 30-point lead in the fourth.
“I guess we just gave up, coaching staff as well,” Thomas said. “We started subbing. It was bad. Especially … I only played 27 minutes. We gave up.”
Boston chipped it down to 11 points in the final 90 seconds. But Curry, who had re-entered the game midway through the fourth, hit a 3-pointer, Jaylen Brown missed one for Boston, and then Curry added a finger roll to clinch it.
Curry shot 7 for 20 in all, making just 2 of 10 attempts from 3-point range. It was the second time this season he has been held under 20 points.
Warriors: Golden State had 30 or more assists for the sixth straight game and the eighth time this season. … Durant took out referee Lauren Holtkamp and a TV cameraman under the basket late in the third quarter and nearly wound up in the lap of a woman sitting in the front row. … Zaza Pachulia had 12 rebounds and Green had eight rebounds and eight assists.
Celtics: Horford missed his ninth straight game with a concussion, but he sat on the bench during the game. Jae Crowder missed his eighth straight game with a sprained left ankle. Stevens said they would both join the team on the flight to Detroit after the game. … Rookie Jaylen Brown was called for a technical in the second quarter for an “unnatural act” when he kicked his leg out and catching Andre Iguodala between the legs.
Warriors: Visit the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday for the third game of a four-game trip.
Celtics: Visit the Pistons on Saturday. Boston leads Detroit by a half-game in the Eastern Conference standings.