Surging Pelicans face off against Golden State Warriors

Jan 10, 2024, 7:07 AM | Updated: 8:38 am

Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after scoring a three point basket during the...

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - OCTOBER 30: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after scoring a three point basket during the fourth quarter of an NBA game against the New Orleans Pelicans at Smoothie King Center on October 30, 2023 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

Two teams that have had two days to respond to shockingly one-sided outcomes meet Wednesday night when the Golden State Warriors host the New Orleans Pelicans in San Francisco.

The Pelicans have been rewarded with two days off in California after opening a five-game trip by blowing out the host Sacramento Kings 133-100 on Sunday behind 30 points from CJ McCollum and 61.0-percent shooting.

Shortly after New Orleans was running up as much as a 50-point lead, the Warriors were falling behind the visiting Toronto Raptors by 27 before halftime of their 133-118 home loss.

The 133 totals in the respective games were the third-most scored by the Pelicans this season and the third-most allowed by the Warriors.

McCollum and Warriors star Stephen Curry wasted no words in their reactions to the polar-opposite results.

“Stop the fight,” McCollum shouted to Pelicans broadcasters during the blowout.

“Got punked from the jump,” Curry sized up afterward.

The Pelicans and Warriors will be meeting for the second time this season. The first encounter was another blowout, this one in Golden State’s favor, 130-102 in October at New Orleans.

Curry had 42 points in the win.

Draymond Green contributed six points, six rebounds and seven assists to the victory. He has missed the last 13 games on NBA suspension (the first 12) and while conditioning following his reinstatement Sunday.

Green is eligible to return to game action, something Golden State coach Steve Kerr said will happen as soon as he’s deemed physically ready. Having had three days to work out since the suspension ended, he will be considered a game-day decision this week, including for the New Orleans game.

“Hopefully get back sooner than later,” Curry said. “Chemistry piece. There’s definitely a familiarity and a confidence that he brings when he’s out there. That isn’t necessarily guaranteed success — we have to continue to address the issues that we have as a team to find that consistency — but you hope that he’ll help for sure.”

The Warriors have lost four of six on a homestand that ends Wednesday.

The Pelicans, meanwhile, have won five of their last six, including a 20-point home blowout of the Los Angeles Lakers and an 11-point win at Minnesota.

The romp at Sacramento came despite the absence of Zion Williamson, who suffered a bruised right quad in Friday’s home loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. He remains questionable for Wednesday’s game.

Williamson or no Williamson, Pelicans coach Willie Green will take a repeat of the Sacramento success anytime.

“It was beautiful,” he said. “Just wire to wire, it was fun basketball to watch. They executed on both ends of the floor and, you know, you have games where it just gets that way. We got a resilient group. Our guys came out and executed.”

After another day off Thursday, the Pelicans will have three games in four days to end their trip, one at Denver on Friday before two straight at Dallas on Saturday and Monday.

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