Durant shines in Warriors playoff debut in Game 1 win

At halftime, the score was deadlocked at 56 and the atmosphere was contentious, as Draymond Green engaged in what I imagine were some not-so-polite chats with members of the Blazers as they headed back to the locker room.

But he was part of a 135-90 debacle on December 17 here — the Warriors' largest margin of victory in the rivalry — that prompted coach Terry Stotts to say afterward, "It's embarrassing to get beat by 45".

Draymond was fantastic. He played a game that I'm not sure anybody else in the league is capable of, honestly.

Luckily for the Warriors they got a Thompson-esque spark from their bench, mainly it was JaVale McGee, who's five-minute stretch in the third quarter might have been his best all season. But after months of hot takes, and this-is-ruining-the-NBA takes, and First Take, it wasn't even about Durant. Klay Thompson and Draymond Green added four points apiece to complete the 15-2 burst that produced a 103-90 advantage.

Then Green simply took the game over with a dominant effort in the fourth quarter.

The Blazers-without center Jusuf Nurkic and heavily mismatched at times-hung in for the first three quarters of this game, giving fans hope they can at least make this series somewhat competitive. If a historic outing from one of the league's hottest tandems is not enough to overcome the Warriors' defense, there probably isn't an answer. Curry, on the other hand, scored only 13 points in the first half on 4-10 shooting but fared far better in the second half, scoring 16 points on nine shots.

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Green and the Warriors didn't give Portland any good looks.

Elsewhere in the West, the Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder tipped off in a series featuring the top contenders in the Most Valuable Player race - Thunder star Russell Westbrook and the Rockets' James Harden.

The rest of the Trail Blazers made 12-of-39 shots from the field for 34 points.

Game two of the series, a rematch of a Western Conference semifinal last season, is on Wednesday.

"Coach Kerr said to me the defensive intensity of this lineup could change the game for us", Green said, recalling a December conversation.

Stephen Curry added 29 points and Draymond Green had 19 points, 12 rebounds, nine assists, three steals and five blocks for the Warriors, who pulled away in the fourth quarter.

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No two plays demonstrated Green's impact more than the block on Lillard, which sent away Portland's All-Star, and a similar at-the-rim rejection of Blazers big man Noah Vonleh in the third quarter.

Damian Lillard typically brings his best when he comes home to the East Bay to take on the Warriors, and he fully expects to win this series. McCollum was especially impressive, hitting shots from a variety of angles and against converging closeouts.

A year ago, the Blazers faced the 73-win Warriors in the playoffs.

The Warriors locked this game up, just like Vegas, you, me, the guy at Oracle, and Chancelor Bennett thought. And that's not good news for the Blazers, because it means the Warriors didn't rely exclusively on their MVPs to win the game.

Ian Clark also made the most of his 12 minutes on the court.

"If you have six turnovers and shoot 30 percent in the (fourth) quarter, it's going to be rough", Blazers coach Terry Stotts said. "So this year we're doing what we can to make sure guys are ready to roll, but you never know what's going to happen". Perhaps, for all of Lillard's confidence and for all of his and McCollum's brilliance, this speaks to the gap between the teams as nothing else does.

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