Stephen Curry, Warriors use big second half to beat Knicks

State Warriors’ Stephen Curry, right, drives against New York Knicks center Enes Kanter during the third quarter of their NBA at Oracle Arena. The Warriors defeated the Knicks 123-112. (USA TODAY Sports)
Updated 24 January 2018
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Stephen Curry, Warriors use big second half to beat Knicks

OAKLAND, California: Kevin Durant mouthed off to official James Williams, got tossed late and might have cost himself another assist during a career night of dishing out the ball.
“I told him he was wrong,” Durant said afterward of arguing with Williams in the first half over a carry.
Stephen Curry scored 17 of his 32 points in the third quarter to go with seven assists and six rebounds, and the Golden State Warriors used a big second half to beat the New York Knicks 123-112 on Tuesday night.
Durant added 14 points, a career-high 14 assists and two blocks before his ejection with 2:50 left for a second technical. Zaza Pachulia added 13 points in Golden State’s seventh straight victory in the series.
“Second half, his whole thing was like he’s trying to get me. ... He was searching for me, he’s looking to try to tech me up to get me back because he’s still got his feelings hurt from the first half,” Durant said. “That’s what’s been going on around the league the whole year, a bunch of that.”
Curry made 8 of 15 from deep while sporting sneakers featuring the faces of his daughters Riley and Ryan and the message “I can do all things.”
The Warriors bounced back from Saturday’s eight-point defeat at Houston to improve to 10-0 following a loss this season.
Michael Beasley scored 21 points and Courtney Lee contributed 20 as New York lost for the third time in four games and sixth in eight.
“We got lucky a little bit in the first half,” Lee said. “They were missing a lot of opens shots, and then in the second half those shots that they were missing went down and we weren’t able to get stops and get out and convert on those opportunities.”
The Warriors opened the third on a 16-9 burst to lead for the first time all night, then went on to score 100 or more points for a 14th straight game.
Draymond Green had 12 points, six assists and five rebounds for the Warriors.
Curry and Thompson shot a combined 4 for 16 in the first half, including 2 of 10 on 3s, before Curry found his stroke and wound up 9 for 19 overall in his 14th 30-point performance of the season. Thompson struggled to nine points on 4-for-10 shooting, missing all three of his 3-point tries.
The Knicks made 11 of their initial 20 shots while the Warriors began 8 of 18 and 1 for 8 from behind the arc to fall behind 29-19 — Curry missed four of his first five field goals.
Andre Iguodala, who had dealt with a bruised left calf that kept him out the previous two games, returned to the Warriors rotation and scored five points in 20 minutes off the bench.
Green and Thompson were named All-Star reserves, joining Curry — a captain — and Durant.
The Warriors became the first team in NBA history to have four All-Stars in back-to-back seasons. It will be the ninth time in NBA history that a team has had four All-Stars play in the game.
“For us to all go is pretty special,” Thompson said. “First time in NBA history to have four guys go two years in a row is incredible.”
Golden State had the same four All-Stars a year ago.
“I’m proud of them, amazing to have four All-Stars two years in a row,” Kerr said. “We’re obviously really lucky to have these guys all together at once on the roster. What I love is they’re so unselfish, they play together so well. That’s why they’re all All-Stars. It wouldn’t work if they were selfish and looking for their own shot, looking for their own points.”


Jose Mourinho’s sacking leaves the ‘Special One’ at a career crossroads

Updated 3 min 52 sec ago
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Jose Mourinho’s sacking leaves the ‘Special One’ at a career crossroads

  • Since the middle of last season, Mourinho had been involved in a power struggle with senior members of the playing squad
  • A string of uninspiring performances since the season started saw Mourinho come in for criticism from all sides

LONDON: Five years after being snubbed for the Manchester United job immediately after the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho has once again been unceremoniously rejected by the club after two-and-a-half fractious and tumultuous years at the helm.
And the truth is, it was an inevitable divorce.
Since the middle of last season, Mourinho had been involved in a power struggle with senior members of the playing squad, openly criticized board members for a lack of backing in the transfer window and the majority of fans had started to turn on the so-called “Special One” and his tactics.
And while they would never do so publicly, no doubt several of the players who had fallen foul of Mourinho’s wrath were privately breathing a sigh of relief when the club announced that Mourinho had left the club with “immediate effect” on Tuesday.
Indeed, the player Mourinho clashed with the most — £89 million ($112 million) midfielder Paul Pogba — deleted a controversial social media post of himself smiling after the news broke.
That controversy was a microcosm of the French World Cup winner’s stormy relationship with Mourinho.
But the former Juventus player, who retuned to Manchester United having already been with the club during the Ferguson era, was repeatedly criticized by Mourinho during his reign and Pogba was stripped of the United vice-captaincy earlier this season.
The pair were captured having a frosty exchange on the training ground as Mourinho grew angry with his key midfielder’s lethargic performances, dropping him on several occasions to spark talk he would be sold by the end of the season.
And even on the pitch, the writing has been on the wall for a while.
A string of uninspiring performances since the season started saw Mourinho come in for criticism from all sides, as the Portuguese became more and more embittered and paranoid in his dealings with the media.
The final straw for the club was Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Liverpool, who United usurped as the biggest club in England under Ferguson’s 27-year reign. And the Scot was seen shaking his head as he watched his dynasty unravel in front of his eyes at the hands of United’s bitterest of rivals.
While the Merseyside club battle it out for the Premier League title with Manchester City and Tottenham — all playing a refreshing, exciting brand of football — United find themselves 19 points adrift of the summit and struggling to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Mourinho’s stagnant, defensive approach jarred with supporters, some of whom have only known the rampant attack-minded approach the club used to such devastating efficacy under Ferguson.
Mourinho was brought in to bring back those glory days after David Moyes and then Dutchman Louis van Gaal struggled to step out of Ferguson’s shadow.
And despite first-season League Cup and Europa League titles, he has failed miserably since. And he has bought himself little good grace with fans and officials, finding new excuses and ways to blame each latest defeat on his players, while ungraciously reminding critics of previous successes at Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid.
But this ignominious end for Mourinho in what he called his “dream job” leaves him at a crossroads in his career. Few clubs will have been inspired by his playing style with a highly-talented team, even fewer will want to deal with the off-field tantrums and constant bickering.
Having arrived in English football as a breath of fresh air, he leaves it (for now) like a foul odor. With the prospect of no club to manage, no trophies to win and no teams to build, Mourinho is now much less the “Special One,” and more and more likely to be the “Tainted One.”