OAKLAND -- Seeking further proof that they climbing out of their slump, the Warriors will try to win their second straight game when they face Orlando Thursday night Oracle Arena.
With a victory over the Magic, or a Clippers loss at Denver, the Warriors would clinch their third consecutive Pacific Division championship.
The Warriors (53-14) are coming off a too-close-for-comfort 106-104 win over the 76ers on Tuesday that snapped their first three-game losing streak under coach Steve Kerr. They overcame a 16-point deficit in the final 14 minutes.
Orlando (24-44) has struggled all season under coach Frank Vogel, in his first year with the teams. The Magic is 9-26 over the last 35 games and has not won consecutive games since December.
Warriors by 14
MATCHUP TO WATCH
Zaza Pachulia vs. Nikola Vucevic: Pachulia was so frustrated with his last game that he kicked a chair when leaving the floor. He needs a bounce back game. The Warriors would like for it to come against Vucevic, a talented offensive player who returned to the lineup last week in two games is averaging 21.5 points and 12.5 rebounds. His 29 double-doubles rank seventh among centers. The 7-footer has added the 3-point shot to his repertoire, making 3-of-3 Monday at Sacramento.
Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L knee sprain, bone bruise) is listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the NBA Development League.
Magic: G Jodie Meeks (R thumb surgery recovery) is listed as questionable.
Warriors: 5-5. Magic: 3-7.
The Warriors have won the last seven meetings, including the first this season, a 118-98 victory on Jan. 22 at Amway Center.
THREE THINGS TO WATCH
STEPHEN CURRY: Curry’s fourth-quarter output in the win over the 76ers was his most impressive 12 minutes, in terms of shooting, in quite some time. He scored 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting, including 3-of-5 beyond the arc. Of his previous 84 shots from deep, only 20 went in. Has the game’s best long-distance shooter returned to form? Or was this a one-quarter aberration?
GET TO 110: Though the Warriors still lead the NBA in scoring (116.1 per game), they have declined of late, averaging 99.5 points over their last six games. The Magic, however, rank last in the league (99.9) and have exceeded 110 points only twice in the last 11 games, losing both times.
THE LOCAL KID: Magic forward Aaron Gordon, a San Jose native, is among the most exciting players in the league. He can be erratic, but his spectacular athleticism often leads to fantastic highlights. He’ll want to put on a show for the 60 or so family and friends at Oracle. The Warriors will need to crowd him and cut off access to the rim.