SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Klay Thompson scored 26 points, Stephen Curry made five 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and had 25 and the Golden State Warriors beat the Utah Jazz 129-107 on Monday night without coach Steve Kerr.
Kerr was in Serbia for the funeral service for Golden State assistant coach Dejan Milojevic, who had a heart attack at a team dinner in Salt Lake City on Jan. 16 and died the next day. Kerr, assistant coaches Chris DeMarco and Ron Adams, general manager Mike Dunleavy, team liaison Zaza Pachulia, and team vice president Rick Celebrini were among the mourners.
“We knew this trip was going to be tough all the way around, just the emotions coming back to a place where it happened, but it was definitely weird without Steve,” Curry said. “It helped us to acknowledge and celebrate what they were doing and where they were at, and where they should have been. And then our ability to go out and allow the game to honor (Milojevic) was good.”
Assistant coach Kenny Atkinson led the Warriors (26-25) in their fifth straight victory, moving them above .500.
“It was strange. Steve’s our leader. He leads the staff. He did a phenomenal job, leading us through a really tough time … and we’ve grown closer through it,” Atkinson said.
Curry made a 33-footer that capped a 14-5 run and made it 114-96. He finished with seven 3-pointers, his third straight game with seven or more.
“The flow of the game tells you a little bit of what’s necessary,” said Curry, who had 10 assists. “They know if I hit a couple shots, they know I’m probably going to keep shooting.”
Thompson scored his most points since having 30 against Chicago on Jan. 12.
“When I get cuts to the rim and stay patient from the 3-point line … when I get early looks at the rim, and I got a couple of mid-range jumpers, everything opens up and I think that’s what allowed me to have an efficient night from the field,” Thompson said.
Andrew Wiggins added 17 points and Jonathan Kuminga had 14 – his 31st straight game in double figures – for the Warriors.
Jordan Clarkson had 22, but just two in the second half. Collin Sexton also scored 22 and Lauri Markkanen added 19 for Utah.
“We brought a good level of physicality to the game and kind of set the tone for the whole team,” said Draymond Green, who had 12 points, nine rebounds and eight assists while leading the Warriors' defensive effort.
Seven Warriors made 3-pointers in the first quarter, including Curry’s pull-up 3 that gave them a 28-17 lead.
Utah scored baskets on seven straight possessions to move in front, but the Warriors took a 63-55 lead at halftime on Green’s 41-foot heave just before the buzzer.
The new Jazz starting lineup was ineffective after they traded away mainstays Simone Fontecchio, Kelly Olynyk and Ochai Agbaji last week, primarily for draft assets.
“We obviously have a lot of work to do in terms of cleaning up some of the guys’ roles and trying to help them understand how they can help each other,” Utah coach Will Hardy said. “Our first group was the one that ultimately didn’t play great tonight.”
Warriors: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday night before they play the Jazz on the road again Thursday.
Jazz: Host the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night.