Basketball

Will bad blood bubble when Warriors and Blazers meet?

The Golden State Warriors and the Portland TrailBlazers, who will meet Tuesday in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals, have played only once in 2019 – and that was in February.

Does bad blood expire after three months?

We're about to find out, because the last time these teams met – Feb. 23 in Portland – things got heated.

The teams split their four games this season, but that was before the Blazers lost Jusuf Nurkic, their 7-foot, 280-pound center, to a season-ending injury (broken leg, March 25). Nurkic averaged 20 points and 10 rebounds in the four games against the Warriors.

Against the odds, the Blazers kept winning. Enes Kanter helped to fill the hole left by Nurkic, averaging 13 points and eight rebounds. Interesting to note that Kanter was acquired by the Blazers on Feb. 23, the day they last played the Warriors.

Here is what has happened up to now:

Nov. 23, at Oakland: Warriors 125, Trail Blazers 97

The Warriors ended a four-game losing streak, their longest in almost five years, and they did it without Stephen Curry and Draymond Green, both of whom were injured. Kevin Durant had 32 points and Klay Thompson had 31.

Dec. 27, at Oakland: Trail Blazers 110, Warriors 109, OT

Damon Lillard hit a 3-pointer with 6.3 seconds left in overtime. Kevin Durant had a triple-double (26-11-10) and a chance to win it, but his 13-foot jumper hit the front of the rim. It was the second straight home loss for the Warriors, coming on the heels of a 26-point Christmas Day beatdown from the Lakers.

Dec. 29, at Portland: Warriors 115, Trail Blazers 105

Klay Thompson punctuated the end of a long shooting slump by literally talking to his right hand after making a 3-pointer. Thompson finished with 32 points. Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry both had 25 to offset Damian Lillard's 40. The Warriors played the second half without Andre Igoudala, who was ejected for throwing a ball deep, deep, deep into the stands.

Feb. 13, at Portland: Trail Blazers 129, Warriors 107

Tempers flared in this game. Klay Thompson beefed with Zach Collins. Draymond Green settled the score later with a flagrant foul on Collins and that ultimately led to Steve Kerr's ejection. Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry each had 32 points. Damian Lillard had 29 to lead eight Portland players in double figures.

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