Sometimes figuring out why one team won and why one team lost doesn’t take a lot of thought. Which was the case in the Warriors’ 121-107 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night at Oracle Arena.
The Warriors made shots from beyond the arc and the Timberwolves didn’t. Simple as that. And nobody made more than Klay Thompson, who finished with seven 3-pointers and a 41-point evening. The Warriors went 14-for-32 from beyond the arc (43.8 percent), which doesn’t sound too crazy if you’re familiar with them. But they buried 14 of their first 24 3-pointers, which took out any drama from the final 18 minutes.
Meanwhile the Timberwolves went 4-for-19 from beyond the arc.
It was the Warriors’ 12th consecutive win, a streak which interestingly enough began after a March 11 loss to the Spurs in San Antonio when the Warriors rested four players: Stephen Curry, Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala. Speaking of the Spurs, they remained 3.5 games in back of the Warriors in the battle for the No. 1 seed and home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
This is the second 12-game winning streak of the season for the Warriors — though all of the wins on the current streak have come without injured forward Kevin Durant. The Warriors have been playing without Durant since Feb. 28, when he injured his left knee in a game against the Wizards.
The Warriors are expecting Durant to return for Saturday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans at Oracle.
The Warriors put this one away in the third quarter, like they’ve put so many games away in the third quarter. Golden State outscored the Timberwolves 36-26 in that quarter and are now a plus-446 in third quarters this season.
No. 2 is San Antonio, which is plus-223 and the Rockets are third at plus-190. No other team is plus-100.
The Warriors’ third-quarter highlight came courtesy of Stephen Curry, who buried consecutive 3-pointers to give Golden State a 94-75 lead with 4:29 remaining. Curry finished with 19 points and nine assists.
At that point in the game, the Warriors were shooting 61.4 percent from the field and 56.5 percent from 3-point range. Golden State finished the game shooting 52.4 percent.
It was the Warriors’ 204th victory over the past three regular seasons, which matches the Chicago Bulls’ mark from 1995-96 to 1997-98 for most regular-season wins in a three-season span.