Celtics watch Warriors lose another starter to injury, roll to 10th straight victory
SAN FRANCISCO—Yet another Golden State starter went down with an injury when D’Angelo Russell sprained his right thumb, but the Warriors still made mighty Boston work until the waning moments.
An out-of-bounds call initially in Golden State’s favor went to replay review and was overturned, leading to the jump ball.
Kemba Walker hit a 3-pointer with 2:19 to play that pulled Boston to 97-95, then Daniel Theis made one free throw with 1:41 remaining.
The Warriors got the ball back with 54.3 seconds left on another overturned replay, but Alec Burks missed a 3 that would have tied it and Walker scored on the other end.
“We’re trying to get better and that starts with just competing,” Golden State center Willie Cauley-Stein said. “We’re taking little steps. Today we had a chance to win it.”
Russell had 12 points and seven assists but also nine of his team’s 19 turnovers before leaving with that aching thumb in the Warriors’ sixth straight defeat. X-rays were negative and he will have an MRI.
Injury-plagued Golden State— playing without Splash Brothers Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson—faced the NBA’s top two teams in consecutive games, losing to the Lakers on the road Wednesday.
“We played our best defensive game of the year. That’s what really matters,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.
In Houston, James Harden scored 44 points and the Houston Rockets used a big fourth quarter run to beat the Indiana Pacers, 111-102.
Houston has won a season-high six games in a row and Harden has scored 36 points or more in five straight games to carry the Rockets as they deal with injuries to Clint Capela, Eric Gordon and Danuel House.
Domantas Sabonis had 18 points and 13 rebounds for Indiana, and Doug and McDermott also scored 18 points. Indiana had won four in a row.
In Los Angeles, LeBron James hit two free throws with 5.5 seconds to play, and Anthony Davis blocked Harrison Barnes’ driving shot at the buzzer with both hands in Los Angeles’ 10th win in 11 games, a 99-97 decision over former coach Luke Walton and Sacramento.
James had 29 points and 11 assists, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 12 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter of the Western Conference-leading Lakers’ third straight win.
Buddy Hield had 21 points and eight rebounds, and Bogdan Bogdanovic added 18 points for the Kings in the LA return of Walton.—AP
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.