NBA regular season

Suns spoil Stephen Curry’s return with win at Golden State

Suns spoil Stephen Curry’s return with win at Golden State

TOUGH RETURN. Warriors guard Stephen Curry battles for position with Suns forward Mikal Bridges.

Cary Edmondson/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Steph Curry returns after missing 11 games but the Warriors still bow to the Suns, who snap a six-game skid despite missing Devin Booker and Chris Paul

Two-way force Mikal Bridges had a team-high 26 points, Damion Lee celebrated his ring ceremony with 22, and the injury-ravaged Phoenix Suns quieted the San Francisco crowd on Stephen Curry’s return with a 125-113 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night, January 10 (Wednesday, January 11, Manila time).

Playing without injured Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton, Cam Johnson, and Cameron Payne, the Suns put a six-game losing streak in the rear-view mirror with a third consecutive victory over the defending champs.

Back after missing 11 straight games with a dislocated shoulder, Curry came on strong late in a 31-minute effort, hitting five three-pointers and finishing with 24 points.

Golden State’s Klay Thompson paced all scorers in the game with 29.

On a night when he was honored for his role in the Warriors’ NBA championship last season, Lee gave Phoenix the lead for good with a three-pointer in the final minute of the first quarter.

The Suns led by 5 at period’s end and by 14 at halftime before using a stingy defense to keep Golden State from mounting any serious runs in the second half.

Bridges shot 10-of-18 en route to his sixth game with at least 25 points this season. He contributed 17 and 23 to the Suns’ earlier home wins over Golden State.

Lee did most of his damage at the free throw line, going 14-for-14. The last 6 came after the Warriors had closed within 6 on a Jordan Poole three-pointer with still 1:28 to play. The Suns shot 29-for-31 from the line for the game.

Pressed into a starting role, Duane Washington Jr. added 21 points. Dario Saric scored 19, and Torrey Craig added 12 to complement a game-high 14 rebounds for the Suns, who were opening a four-game trip.

Saric also found time for 9 rebounds and a game-high 7 assists, while Bridges chipped in 9 rebounds and 5 assists.

Thompson shot 10-for-24 and Curry 8-for-22 for the Warriors, who wrapped up an eight-game home stand with three straight losses after winning five straight.

Thompson went 6-for-14 from beyond the arc and Curry 5-for-15. Golden State outscored the guests 54-42 on three-pointers, but needed 17 additional tries (48-31) to do it.

Poole contributed 27 points to the Warriors’ cause and Andrew Wiggins 10, while Draymond Green had team highs in rebounds (12) and assists (6, tied with Poole) to go with 5 points. –

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