Basketball: Golden State Warriors sweep Portland Trail Blazers to advance in NBA playoffs

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, left, dribbles around his back past Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu. Photo / AP
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, left, dribbles around his back past Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu. Photo / AP

Stephen Curry had 37 points before sitting out the final quarter and the Golden State Warriors welcomed back teammate Kevin Durant with a 128-103 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers to sweep their first-round playoff series.

The Warriors advanced to the conference semifinals, where they'll face the winner of the series between the Utah Jazz and the Los Angeles Clippers, which is tied at two apiece.

Golden State played for the second straight game without coach Steve Kerr, who has been experiencing a flare-up of symptoms stemming from back surgery a couple of years ago. Assistant Mike Brown has served as head coach in Kerr's absence.

Durant hadn't played since Game 1 because of a strained left calf. He started and the Warriors built a 72-48 lead by the end of the opening half, including a record-equalling 45 point first quarter to kill off any hopes of a Portland victory and knock them out of the playoffs.

- AP

- NZ Herald

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