NBA Gameday: Three goals for JaVale McGee against DeMarcus Cousins

NBA Gameday: Three goals for JaVale McGee against DeMarcus Cousins

Programming note: Warriors-Kings coverage starts tonight at 6:30pm with Warriors Pregame Live on CSN Bay Area, and streaming live right here.

OAKLAND -- It’s not often that the Warriors feel they have something to prove, but there will be at least a measure of pride on the line Wednesday night.

Eleven days after a shocking loss in Sacramento, the Warriors take the floor at Oracle Arena trying to avoid their first two-game losing streak to the Kings since 2011.

The Warriors (46-9), coming off a stunning 22-point loss at Denver, are looking to extend to 142 their NBA record streak of games without consecutive losses; no other team has reached 100. They’re 23-3 this season at home, where they average 122.3 points per game.

The Kings (24-32) are on their second four-game win streak this season. Can they make it five? They’ve had two five-game win streaks over the last 10 years.

BETTING LINE

Warriors by 18

MATCHUP TO WATCH

JaVale McGee vs. DeMarcus Cousins: Cousins is a load under any circumstances, but he has been terrific lately, with 40 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists Tuesday night against the Lakers in LA. With the Warriors’ top two centers out, McGee has three goals: 1) Stay out of foul trouble; 2) Make Boogie work on defense; and 3) Do not let Cousins dominate the paint. The Warriors are fine with Cousins launching threes, but if he does damage inside and gets to the foul line, it could be trouble.

INJURY REPORT

Warriors: Klay Thompson (R heel soreness) is listed as probable. C Zaza Pachulia (R rotator cuff strain) and F/C David West (L thumb fracture) are listed as out.

Kings: G Ty Lawson (L adductor strain) is listed as questionable. F Omri Casspi (R plantaris tendon strain), F Rudy Gay (L Achilles tear) and G Garrett Temple (L hamstring, partial tear) are listed as out.

LAST 10

Warriors: 8-2. Kings: 6-4.

SERIES HISTORY

The Warriors have won two of three meetings this season and 13 of the last 14 overall. They have won the last six games, and 17 of the last 20, in Oakland.

THREE THINGS TO WATCH

THE REVENGE FACTOR: The Warriors hate to lose, but they hate it even more when beaten by a team they routinely dominate. Having lost to the Kings for the first time in nearly four years, they’ll be out to reestablish their superiority.

THE GLASS WARS: The Kings are a notoriously poor rebounding team; they rank 29th this season. The Warriors, largely through team effort, have become a good rebounding squad. After losing the glass battle 52-27 to the Nuggets, they’ll make a conscious effort to own it.

THE PACE GAME: Knowing the Kings (27th in pace) are not built to run, the Warriors (second) likely will push tempo at every opportunity. Given their relatively thin post defense, that may be the best way to grind down the effectiveness of Cousins.

Steph Curry keeps game ball for Steve Kerr after he misses Game 3

Steph Curry keeps game ball for Steve Kerr after he misses Game 3

While head coach Steve Kerr was unable to make Saturday's Game 3 due to an illness, the Warriors went out and took a 3-0 series lead over the Blazers. 

After the game, Steph Curry dedicated the win to Kerr by keeping the game ball for him. 

"Our coach is going through a lot right now physically and he told us this morning this is a situation where we need to rally and go out and win a game for him, but we felt like that," Curry said after the Warriors' 119-113 win. "The way that game had gone on we had to fight and do it for him. 

"The way that he said it was we had to win one for The Gipper, so shout out to coach Kerr." 

Curry led the Warriors with 34 points in Saturday's win. 

Instant Replay: Warriors battle Blazers, take commanding 3-0 series lead

Instant Replay: Warriors battle Blazers, take commanding 3-0 series lead

BOX SCORE

PORTLAND -- Head coach Steve Kerr didn’t show and All-Star forward Kevin Durant didn’t play.

Neither did Shaun Livingston or Matt Barnes.

No matter. Trailing by as much as 17 before a surging Trail Blazers team and a thunderous sellout crowd at Moda Center, the Warriors found their way to a 119-113 victory in Game 3 of their first-round playoff series Saturday night.

The Warriors can close out the series with a win in Game 4 here on Monday night.

With assistant coach Mike Brown serving as acting head coach in the absence of an ill Kerr, five Warriors scored in double figures, led by Stephen Curry’s 34 points. Klay Thompson put in 24, Andre Iguodala 16, JaVale McGee 14 and Pat McCaw 11.

The Warriors overcame a 16-point third-quarter deficit and a 52-42 rebounding disadvantage with a single, searing stretch of defense in the third quarter, when they limited Portland to 30.4-percent shooting.

Guards CJ McCollum, who totaled 32 points, and Damian Lillard, who posted 31, led the Trail Blazers.

STANDOUT PERFORMER

As crucial to the comeback as was the offensive reemergence of Curry and Thompson, nobody did more good things over different portions of the game than did McGee.

McGee’s line: 14 points (6-of-8 shooting from the field, 2-of-2 from the line), four rebounds and one steal. He played 16 minutes and finished a game-high plus-24.

TURNING POINT

Trailing 82-66 after a Lillard finger roll with 6:20 left in the third quarter, the Warriors rumbled back with a 19-1 run, taking an 85-83 lead when McGee slammed through a lob with 2:01 left in the quarter.

The Warriors during that stretch held Portland to 0-of-8 shooting, with three turnovers.

INJURY UPDATE

Warriors: F Matt Barnes (R foot/ankle bone bruise), F Kevin Durant (L calf strain) and G Shaun Livingston (R index finger sprain and hand contusion) were listed as questionable and downgraded to out. F Kevon Looney (L hip strain) is listed as out.

Blazers: G Allen Crabbe (L foot soreness) and G CJ McCollum (R ankle sprain) were listed as probable and upgraded to available. C Jusuf Nurkic (L leg fracture) was listed as doubtful and upgraded to available. C Ed Davis (L shoulder surgery) and C Festus Ezeli (L knee surgery) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT

The teams reconvene Monday night at Moda Center for Game 4. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.