Down 23-3 in the first quarter, the Golden State Warriors surged and overwhelmed the Spurs in San Antonio, in their second of a road back-to-back. The previous night they defeated Houston. The two nights added to a 9 game winning streak, which began immediately after their 3 losses in a row following Kevin Durant's injury. And they won those 9 without Durant.
The victory pretty much seals the number one seed in the West for the Warriors, with a 3 game spread over the Spurs with 7 games left. Thanks to continued losses by Cleveland in the past week or so, any of the West teams would have home court in the finals, including the Dubs.
This impressive if not incredible victory was actually a win for both the Warriors and Spurs because it pretty much settled the #1 seed. Had the Warriors lost, they would have been ahead by a single game, and both teams would probably have felt the need to compete for the seed. Now they both can see about resting players before the playoffs, although that will be complicated for the Dubs if Durant is ready to return for the last games of the regular season. Coach Kerr would probably want him to play with his fellow starters.
The Warriors victory in San Antonio also has to be viewed as a statement game. The Spurs surprised them with a rout at home to start the season, and their next meeting--also the second of a back-to-back on the road for the Warriors--resulted in Kerr resting his starters, and an easy Spurs victory. But the Warriors outplaying the Spurs for three quarters after giving them a 22 point advantage, in the second of another back-to-back, and without Durant, has to sow some doubts in San Antonio.
No one yet knows when Durant will return, nor how he will play. But with these nine victories against the most competitive teams in the West, the Warriors look fully capable of beating anybody with their current lineup--and Durant coming off the bench for additional defense and firepower. All of this as it looks more and more that the winner of the West playoffs will be the favorite to win it all.