Warriors even series at two
WARRIORS 118 CLIPPERS 97
OAKLAND, Calif. — Stephen Curry made a career playoff-high seven 3-pointers and scored 33 points, leading the Golden State Warriors past the Los Angeles 118-97 on Sunday to even a first-round series that has been pulled into a race-related scandal involving the Clippers’ owner.
Clippers players made a silent protest against Donald Sterling by shedding their warm-up jerseys and going through pregame routine with their red shirts on inside out. They also wore black bands on their wrists or arms and black socks in a show of solidarity.
Curry and the Warriors made another kind of statement.
The All-Star guard made his first five 3-pointers to give Golden State a 20-point lead in the first quarter that held up most of the way. Curry shot 10 for 20 from the floor, including 7 of 14 from beyond the arc, and had seven assists and seven rebounds to help the Warriors snap a two-game skid.
Golden State outshot Los Angeles 55.4 to 42.9 percent. The Clippers had 19 turnovers, while the Warriors had a series-low 15 turnovers.
Game 5 is Tuesday night in Los Angeles.
Andre Iguodala added 22 points and nine assists, and David Lee, Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes each scored 15 as the Warriors regained their shooting touch in front of a roaring, gold-shirt wearing sellout crowd of 19,596 that stood after every swish.
Jamal Crawford scored 26 points, and Blake Griffin had 21 points and six rebounds for a Clippers team wrapped up in the most talked-about topic in sports.
WIZARDS 98 BULLS 89
WASHINGTON — Even with the team’s “X-factor” suspended, the Washington Wizards had a No. 42 sitting next to the bench. The 57-year-old with graying hair couldn’t box out or grab a rebound, but owner Ted Leonsis waved his red towel and egged on a cheering crowd that chanted “Free Nene!”
The Wizards did just fine without the suspended Brazilian forward. They scored the first 14 points and beat the Chicago Bulls 98-89 on Sunday to take a 3-1 lead in the Eastern Conference series.
“I thought it was pretty hilarious that Ted had Nene’s jersey on,” Wizards guard Bradley Beal said. “It kind of threw me off for a minute, but then I looked and seen it was Ted.”
Nene or not, the Wizards did what they’ve done all series: Take a quick lead and force the Bulls to use up energy trying to catch up. It was 15-8 in Game 3, 29-12 in Game 2, 19-13 in Game 1. Washington, seeking to win a playoff series for only the third time since the 1970s, can finish off the Bulls on the road in Game 5 on Tuesday night.
“We keep seeing this same kind of start for the last couple of games, and it’s frustrating,” said Taj Gibson, who came off the bench to lead the Bulls with a career-high 32 points. “It seems like at times we get overhyped with just thinking we’re going to be OK, we’re just that good. But in this league it’s not about how talented you are, it’s about how hard you work and how much effort you put when you start the game off, and I don’t think we did that.”
RAPTORS 87 NETS 79
NEW YORK — DeMar DeRozan scored 24 points, Kyle Lowry added 22, and the Toronto Nets beat the Brooklyn Nets 87-79 t to even their Eastern Conference first-round series at two games apiece.
Amir Johnson had 17 points for the Raptors, who started fast, gave up all of a 17-point lead, then shut the Nets down over the final 5 minutes to snap a 13-game road losing streak in the playoffs that went back 13 years.
Game 5 is Wednesday night in Toronto, with the series now guaranteed a return to Brooklyn on Friday for Game 6.
Paul Pierce scored 22 points for the Nets, who were 3 for 17 in the fourth quarter and didn’t have a field goal after Pierce’s basket with 6:13 left gave them a 77-73 lead.
Kevin Garnett had 10 points for the Nets, but Joe Johnson and Deron Williams were mostly nonfactors in getting outplayed by Toronto’s backcourt. Johnson had only seven points on seven shots after averaging 23.7 points in the first three games, and Williams was 4 of 12 for his 10.
Pierce nearly carried the Nets without them, but Toronto put it together down the stretch to pull it out.
Garnett gave the Nets their last lead with two free throws with 4:58 left, but DeRozan made two free throws before Greivis Vasquez made a 3-pointer for an 83-79 advantage. The Nets had a series of offensive fouls along with their missed shots, and Lowry made a basket with 1:13 to go before closing it out with a pair of free throws.
The Raptors scored a franchise playoff-record 35 points in the first quarter, then turned to their defense down the stretch for their first road victory in the postseason since winning at Philadelphia in Game 1 of the 2001 Eastern Conference semifinals