Programming note: Nuggets-Warriors coverage starts tonight at 6:30pm with Warriors Pregame Live on CSN Bay Area, and streaming live right here.
OAKLAND – It will be a clash of two teams with vastly differing fortunes when the Nuggets visit the Warriors at Oracle Arena Friday night.
The defending champion Warriors are rolling, coming out of the gate with five consecutive wins, four of which came by double digits. Reigning MVP Steph Curry is playing as if he wants to repeat the accomplishment.
Denver, by contrast, can’t find a rhythm. Since opening the season with a 20-point win at Houston, the Nuggets are 1-3, with the losses by an average of 17.7 points. Their only victory since opening night came against the winless Los Angeles Lakers.
While the Nuggets, coached by former Warriors assistant Michael Malone, are shooting 41.4 percent, tied for 22nd in the NBA, the Warriors are shooting 48 percent and rank second.
Warriors by 14.
MATCHUP TO WATCH
Draymond Green vs. Kenneth Faried -- There always is the promise of action with these two relentless forwards. Faried likes to work the glass, where he does most of his scoring. He does not have a versatile offensive game, so he utilizes his energy to make an impact. Green likely will turn to his jumper, from midrange and beyond the arc, to try to draw the “Manimal” outside.
Warriors: C Andrew Bogut (concussion) and F Kevon Looney (hip surgery) are out.
Nuggets: F Kenneth Faried (low back soreness) is listed as probable. F/C Joffrey Lauvergne (low back strain) and C Nikola Jokic (low back strain) are listed as questionable. F Wilson Chandler (R hip strain) and C Jusuf Nurkic (L knee surgery) are listed as out.
The Warriors last season won two of three but the teams are 7-7 over the past five seasons. The Warriors have won five of the last eight meetings at Oracle.
“It’ll be a good game. Coach Malone, he was here, so he knows we like to play fast. They’re actually a really well coached team and they play hard. So it’s definitely going to be up and down.” – Warriors forward Harrison Barnes on facing the Nuggets