Warriors vs. Thunder: Score, Highlights, Reaction from 2017 Regular Season

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2017

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - MARCH 20: Andre Iguodala #23 of the Golden State Warriors all smiles in this photo against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the game on March 20, 2017 at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Jesse D. Garrabrant/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors rolled over the Oklahoma City Thunder, 111-95, Monday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City.

Stephen Curry scored 23 points on 8-of-17 shooting, and Klay Thompson led all scorers with 34 points. The Splash Brothers were deadly from the perimeter, going a combined 14-of-27 from beyond the arc.

ESPN Stats & Info noted their dominance Monday:

The Warriors effectively shut down Russell Westbrook, who shot 4-of-16 and scored 15 points. He missed out on a triple-double, collecting eight rebounds and dishing out seven assists.

This was the first time the Warriors and Thunder met since Durant's return to Oklahoma City Feb. 11—a game Golden State won, 130-114.

ESPN.com's Chris Haynes reported some inside the Warriors organization took issue with the Thunder's handling of Durant's first game back: "The Warriors' belief, according to sources, is that the Thunder's silence contributed to the raw emotions, outrage and indignation that created an unsettling, hostile atmosphere for a player many consider to be the franchise's all-time best."

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr took issue with Haynes' report, calling Oklahoma City "first class" and saying he and Golden State "have great respect for the Thunder," per ESPN.com's Ethan Sherwood Strauss.

Durant missed Monday's game through injury, but that didn't lessen the hostility toward the Warriors from Oklahoma City fans. The Oklahoman's Erik Horne shared a clip of the home crowd booing Golden State's starters during the pregame introductions:

During the Warriors' first matchup in Oklahoma City, one fan dressed as a cupcake to troll Durant—a reference to Westbrook sharing a photo of cupcakes on the day Durant signed with Golden State. The cupcake showed up with a crutch Monday night to further mock Durant, per SB Nation NBA:

The Thunder hanged with the Warriors through the first quarter, but Golden State broke the game open in the second. The Warriors outscored their opponents, 34-17, to take a 59-39 halftime lead.

Tensions between the two teams boiled over with 5.3 seconds in the first half. Thunder guard Semaj Christon got into a shoving match with Curry before a jump ball, sparking a minor fracas:

Curry responded by hitting a three-pointer at the buzzer:

The San Jose Mercury News' Tim Kawakami thought the two-time reigning MVP will have enjoyed silencing the fans before heading into the locker room:

The Thunder went on a 9-0 run in the third quarter to cut their deficit to 12 points, 64-52, but they couldn't stop Golden State's offensive barrage. The Warriors outscored Oklahoma City, 28-14, over the remainder of the quarter to effectively end any comeback attempt for the Thunder.

Monday will be the last time these two teams meet in the regular season, but a playoff matchup isn't out of the question. Should the Thunder qualify for the fourth or fifth seed in the Western Conference, they could then meet the Warriors in the second round—assuming Golden State holds on to the top spot.

Considering, however, the Warriors have beaten the Thunder by an average of 19.7 points, Golden State vs. Oklahoma City may not make for a compelling series.

 

Postgame Reaction

The second-quarter commotion was the subject of discussion after the game.

The San Jose Mercury News' Anthony Slater shared the thoughts of Kerr and Warriors forward Draymond Green:

Westbrook said he stepped in to defend Christon, per ESPN.com's Royce Young:

Thunder head coach Billy Donovan didn't see any cause for concern following the shoving match, calling it "not that big of a deal," per Horne.

"It was a situation where Semaj was not gonna back up, [and] neither was Curry," Donovan said.