Birthday boy Klay Thompson leads Golden State Warriors past Chicago Bulls

OAKLAND, Calif. — Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson celebrated his 27th birthday Wednesday like none of the previous 26.

One day after attending the funeral of his grandfather, Thompson returned to the basketball court with a purpose — to win an NBA game on his birthday for the first time.

Six 3-pointers and 28 points later, mission accomplished.

“Third time’s the charm, I guess,” Thompson proudly stated after he and his Warriors teammates outscored the Chicago Bulls 45-12 from beyond the 3-point arc on their way to a comfortable 123-92 win.

The victory, which came three days after a loss at Sacramento, allowed the Warriors to extend their NBA-record streak of games without consecutive losses to 138.

Golden State is now 18-0 following a loss in the run that dates back to April 2015.

Kevin Durant recorded a 22-point, 10-rebound double-double with seven assists, and Draymond Green added 19 points to complement eight rebounds and six assists as the Warriors (44-8) recorded their seventh straight home win.

The Bulls (26-27) were playing without All-Star small forward Jimmy Butler, who missed his third consecutive game with a bruised heel, and shooting guard Dwyane Wade, who stayed at the team hotel because of an upper-respiratory illness.

“There’s never any excuses in this league,” said Bulls center Robin Lopez, who had team highs in points (17) and rebounds (10). “We didn’t come out the right way in the first quarter. We committed a lot of turnovers … so we were playing from behind.”

The game began with many, including Warriors coach Steve Kerr, wondering about his team’s mindset.

Golden State was playing at home against an outmatched team, had a possible look-ahead to an attention-grabbing back-to-back at Memphis and Oklahoma City, and had endured a second Durant-Green squabble Sunday night in Sacramento.

And then there was Thompson, who was away from the team Monday and Tuesday while dealing with his family matter.

Turns out, Thompson was the least of the Warriors’ worries.

“Tough time,” Thompson said of the aftermath of his grandfather’s death. “My family loves to watch me play. This was a good way to honor them tonight.”

The outcome wasn’t in doubt for long after the Warriors broke from an 11-11 tie with a 13-point flurry. Thompson contributed a pair of 3-pointers and Durant a three-point play to the early runaway.

The Warriors extended the lead to 15 in the second quarter and 20 in the third en route to a ninth consecutive home win this season against Eastern Conference competition.

All 13 Warriors scored, including newcomer Briante Weber, who not only dropped in a hoop but also participated in a late runaway.

“I loved the way we finished the game,” Kerr said. “We had the upper hand in talent with their injuries. We just had to stick with it.”

Thompson, who made his 400th career start, finished 10 of 18 from the field and 6 of 9 on 3-pointers, helping the Warriors go 15 of 28 from beyond the arc.

Green made five of his six 3-point attempts.

Stephen Curry had one of the 3-pointers but saw his streak of consecutive games with 20 or more points end at 16. He finished with 13 points in just 28 minutes.

The Bulls, meanwhile, missed 20 of their 24 3-point attempts.

Taj Gibson supported frontcourt mate Lopez with 15 points and nine rebounds for the Bulls, who fell to 2-2 on their six-game trip.

“Golden State … when they lost (to Sacramento) and had some time to recover and regroup, it’s a tough team to play against,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “Especially when there’s some controversy (the Durant-Green dispute) that sounds like it was mostly (baloney).”

Backup Rajon Rondo had a game-high eight assists to go with 12 points and six rebounds for Chicago, which shot just 40.2 percent from the field.

The Warriors made 55.8 percent of their shots overall and totaled 37 assists on 48 hoops.

NOTES: Warriors SG Klay Thompson not only had lost on his birthday twice previously in his NBA career, but he averaged only 13.0 points in those games. … The Warriors’ next two games are Friday at Memphis, which has beaten Golden State twice already this season, and Saturday at Oklahoma City in SF Kevin Durant’s return. … The Bulls finish of their six-game trip at Phoenix on Friday and at Minnesota on Sunday. … Bulls SF Jimmy Butler (bruised heel) reported continuing pain during Wednesday’s shootaround, making him doubtful to return Friday. … The Bulls expect to get SG Dwyane Wade (upper respiratory infection) back for the Phoenix game.

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