Stephen Curry drops 29 on Wizards to help Warriors end skid

WASHINGTON -- Golden State built a 20-point lead by the third quarter Wednesday night, then seemed to take it easy and very nearly paid the price.

The Warriors withstood a furious rally by the Washington Wizards
for a 106-102 victory that wasn't sealed until Stephen Curry hit
three free throws in the final 5.9 seconds.

Curry finished with 29 points and nine rebounds as Golden State snapped a four-game losing streak and improved to 1-2 on its season-high seven-game road trip.

"You're always in control of the game if you're winning, and they had to do so much to get back in it," Curry said. "You don't want to be in that situation, so we have to learn from that and keep that lead and hopefully maintain that throughout the fourth quarter."

The Warriors jumped on the Wizards at the outset of the second half, with Curry and Monta Ellis stepping up on offense to slowly boost a nine-point advantage. Ellis' driving layup gave Golden State an 85-65 bulge with 4:07 left in the third and it seemed as if the rout was on.

"All of a sudden, you look up and you're down 20," said Randy Wittman, who served as acting Wizards coach while Flip Saunders missed the game to attend to his ailing mother.

Washington, which has now lost seven straight and 16 of 18 overall, got within 103-102 on Nick Young's deep 3-pointer with 6.3 seconds remaining. Curry hit two free throws to push the lead to 105-102 with 5.9 seconds left, and Young's desperation 3 from the top of the key with 1.7 seconds remaining was well off the mark.

Curry added one final free throw.

"I wish I could take it back," said Young, who scored a game-high 31 points. "But you can't do nothing about it now."

For the Warriors, who had big offensive nights only to lose to Minnesota and Indiana in their last two games, it was a familiar story with a different ending.

"When you've gone through a streak of losing, to get a win -- no matter how it ends up -- nobody will pay attention to how the fourth quarter went," Golden State coach Keith Smart said.

The Warriors took advantage of the Wizards' porous defense early, driving the lane with ease to score 25 fast-break points. Ellis finished with 21 points and Dorell Wright added 14.

The Warriors also held a 54-40 advantage on the boards, with David Lee accounting for 16.

"I'd like to think that when we outrebound the other team we have a very good win-loss record, so I try to set the tone and if shots come my way, they do, and if they don't, they don't," Lee said. "My main concern is to continue rebounding."

Andray Blatche had 20 points and John Wall added 14 points and six assists for Washington.

"To fight back and have a shot to tie it at the end is a credit to them, but we can't afford to dig ourselves a hole," Wittman said.

Defense was optional for most of the game, not surprising given both teams ranked in the bottom third of the league in points per game allowed.

Golden State took control in the second quarter, with its bench players sparking a 9-0 run to break a 42-42 deadlock. Reggie Williams finished off the burst with an emphatic dunk to give the Warriors a 51-42 edge with 5:42 remaining in the period. Curry kept the advantage at nine heading into halftime by draining a 3 with less than a second left.

Game notes
F Al Thornton, who agreed to a buyout with the Wizards on Tuesday and is expected to join the Warriors on Thursday once he clears waivers, worked out at the Verizon Center before the game. ... Maurice Evans and Jordan Crawford finally were able to participate in their first practice Tuesday after playing in two games since their trade from Atlanta. "We're feeling more comfortable," Evans said. "Obviously, everything didn't come together all at once, but I think we can assist the team by playing with a lot more energy and a fresh attitude." ... Wittman said he wanted Wall and Young to have 10 rebounds between them due to the perimeter nature of the game. The pair finished with two boards.