OAKLAND (CBS SF/AP) — The Golden State Warriors were handily defeated 128-95 at home by the Boston Celtics, marking the team’s worst defeat at Oracle Arena since Steve Kerr assumed the head coach position in 2014.
DeMarcus Cousins and Terry Rozier received double technicals with 8:44 to play. Cousins was called for his fifth foul on a charge drawn by Aron Baynes, then the fiery Warriors center stood over Baynes in clear frustration. Jayson Tatum bumped Cousins with his right arm and Cousins pushed back with some force, then Rozier entered the fray and he and Cousins traded shoves.
Boogie’s moment summed up an ugly evening of basketball by his team — and fans seeing their final season in the East Bay made a mad dash for the Oracle Arena exits in the closing minutes.
Stephen Curry provided a bright spot with 23 points and four 3-pointers on a night Splash Brother Klay Thompson sat out with soreness in his right knee.
Kevin Durant scored 18 points but committed five turnovers, while Cousins wound up with 10 points on 4-for-12 shooting — missing all five of his 3-point tries — and nine rebounds to go with four turnovers.
The Warriors, who had won the last two meetings with Boston, couldn’t overcome a lackluster first half in which they were outhsustled on both ends and faced a daunting 73-48 halftime deficit.
Tatum scored 17 points for the Celtics, who came in having lost five of six since the All-Star break.
Golden State missed its initial four shots and fell behind 11-0 as Boston started 5 of 7 before Curry’s jumper at 8:26. The Warriors made five straight shots and used a 12-2 burst to get right back in it.
Alfonzo McKinnie started in place of Thompson and contributed seven points in 17 minutes.
Shaun Livingston missed the game with neck spasms. Andre Iguodala, sporting a new look with his head completely shaved, played after dealing with lower back tightness. Kevon Looney missed a second straight game with right pelvic soreness.
McKinnie went through an extensive pregame warmup routine behind the scenes after he left against the 76ers with a bruised left hip. Golden State earned a winning road record for a sixth straight season. The Warriors added depth by recalling G Jacob Evans III from the G League Santa Cruz Warriors.
Chiquita Evans became the first woman ever drafted into the NBA 2K League when Warriors Gaming selected her in the fourth round Tuesday night. A former college and semipro basketball player, Evans is now the esports league’s first female pro, one of the 126 players who will make between $33,000 to $37,000 per season, plus benefits and team housing.
“I think that’s really cool that she’s passionate and inspired and broke a barrier,” coach Steve Kerr said. “That’s awesome.”
Evans is now Bay Area-bound — and a lifelong fan of Durant.
“Pretty cool,” Golden State general manager Bob Myers said.
Durant, too, was thrilled.
“Esports has become a huge thing now,” he said. “More people who enjoy the game might get an opportunity to be professionals and make some money for themselves and make some money. I think it’s cool.”