OAKLAND – Klay Thompson scorched the nets for a career-high 38 points as the Warriors opened their season Wednesday night with a 125-94 win over the Los Angeles Lakers before a sellout crowd at Oracle Arena.
Power forward David Lee tossed in 24 points, reserve guard Toney Douglas finished with 13 and Stephen Curry added 10 as no other Warrior scored in double figures. Xavier Henry and Jodie Meeks led the Lakers with 14 apiece.
So comfortable was this tip-to-horn victory for the Warriors that coach Mark Jackson rested his starters for the fourth quarter, giving his backups valuable playing time.
It should be noted, however, that neither Kobe Bryant nor Steve Nash played for the Lakers, who traveled north after a win the previous night in L.A.
Standout Performances: Thompson was the clear MVP of the evening, scoring from all points. The third-year shooting guard, the most impressive Warrior during training camp, hit 15-19 shots from the field, including five of seven 3-pointers.
Center Andrew Bogut and Lee controlled the boards, each man grabbing eight as the Warriors outrebounded L.A. 48-39. Forward Draymond Green came off the bench to grab seven rebounds in 19 minutes.
Turning Point: Thompson’s first 3-pointer, a 27-foot jumper, gave the Warriors a 5-0 lead 63 seconds after tipoff, setting the tone that never changed. After taking a 28-18 lead with 10:31 left in the second quarter, the Warriors maintained a double-digit lead for the rest of the night.
Injury Update: Small forward Harrison Barnes was in uniform but did not play. He continues to sit out with what the Warriors describe as inflammation in his left foot. He has neither played nor practiced since Oct. 7 and the team has revealed no timetable for his return. Though Nash suited up for the Lakers, Bryant did not as he continues to recover from offseason surgery on his Achilles tendon.
Up Next: The Warriors went directly to the Oakland Airport after the game for their charter flight to Los Angeles, where they play the Clippers Thursday night at Staples Center. The Clippers, a popular pick to win the Western Conference, are 0-1 after losing to the Lakers on Tuesday night.