Predictably, Golden State began the game much more the defending champions on par for the greatest regular season in NBA History than the lethargic bunch embarrassed by the Trail Blazers back on March 11. Klay Thompson opened the night with two of his four first-quarter threes for six of his 37 points as Portland miss its first five shots, falling into an early 18-9 hole.
Stephen Curry - who finished with 34 of his own - picked up where Thompson left off, drilling three of his four first-quarter threes to fuel a 17-5 Warriors run which extended the lead to double-digits at 27-13 and the Blazers were in trouble.
End of First: Portland 27, Golden State 40
The Warriors' dominance continued into the second - Andre Iguodala hit a pair of threes, and Thompson added his fifth of the evening to put Golden State ahead by 21 at 61-40 just halfway through the period. Meanwhile, Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum struggled to get anything, combining to score only 20 points in the first half on 6-21 shooting.
Instead, Portland was led by Gerald Henderson off the bench, who scored 12 points looking like the only Blazer on the floor who showed up to Oracle Arena ready to play.
Thompson's sixth three gave the Warriors 70 points still with three minutes remaining, and his seventh kept the lead at 20 at 79-59. Golden State's 81 points would be their highest total for a first half so far this season.
Halftime: Portland 61, Golden State 81
Yet another three from Thompson pushed the lead to 25 at 91-66 and Portland was clearly floundering. The Warriors had came to win emphatically and there just wasn't about anything the Blazers could do at either end to stop that. Thompson's eighth three kept Golden State rolling, and Curry's seventh gave them the largest lead of the night at 100-68.
Lillard, McCollum and Meyers Leonard would close the quarter with a mini-three-point barrage, hitting five between them, but could only close the gap to 24 heading in to the final frame. You could get the sense Portland was throwing in the towel.
End of Third: Portland 86, Golden State 110
For a moment Brian Roberts made the fourth interesting, scoring 8 points, including grabbing the rebound of his own missed free throw to nail a three which pulled the Blazers within an unusually encouraging 14-point hole. But that's as far as Portland would go - Pat Connaughton had some garbage-time highlights, but on the whole the Warriors were never threatened. With a cross-country back-to-back looming in Orlando, coach Terry Stotts wisely rested his key contributors to fight another day.
The Trail Blazers return home to the Moda Center to complete the second half of a back-toback against the Orlando Magic Saturday at 7:30 pm. Stay tuned to Blazer's Edge tonight, for extended analysis of this game from Dave Deckard.
-- Ryan Rosback | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter