Curry lifts Warriors over Bucks

SAN FRANCISCO — Stephen Curry knocked down all the dazzling shots everybody has come to expect from him in crunch time night after night — and then a surprising block at the rim that mattered just as much or maybe even more.

Curry scored 36 points with 22 in the fourth quarter and overtime, shining in his first home game back from a long injury absence and leading the Golden State Warriors past the NBA-best Milwaukee Bucks 125-116 on Sunday, March 12, 2023 (PH time).

Curry hit a tying 3-pointer with 19 seconds left in regulation, then blocked a layup attempt by Jrue Holiday in the closing moments.

The Warriors got the ball back with 1.9 seconds remaining and Curry inbounded to Green, who missed from deep though he thought for sure it was “cash.”

Holiday had put Milwaukee up on a 3 with 32.7 seconds to play and wound up with 18 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. But the Bucks (48-19), playing without star Giannis Antetokounmpo, had their three-game winning streak snapped with just their second defeat in 21 games since Jan. 21.

Curry’s 3 with 1:08 remaining in regulation got Golden State within 108-106. A steal by Klay Thompson on the other end moments later led to a tying layup by Curry before Holiday delivered.

Thompson added 22 points, Donte DiVincenzo had 20 points and 10 rebounds and the Warriors won at home for the seventh in a row and 11th in 12.

Khris Middleton had 19 points and five assists, Bobby Portis contributed 15 points and 13 rebounds and Brook Lopez 19 points, seven boards and five blocks.

Bucks leading scorer and rebounder Antetokounmpo missed his second straight game with right-hand soreness and third overall after sitting out March 7 with a non-Covid illness.

Meanwhile, Thompson presented soon-to-be 16-year-old Braulio Noriega with a birthday surprise: a custom-basketball wheelchair. Noriega had his left leg amputated from above the knee because of cancer as a six-year-old.

The teen hopes to compete playing wheelchair basketball in college and eventually in his home country of Mexico. (AP)