The Warriors have a legitimate rival in the contending Clippers and maybe even a foil in the championship-pedigreed Spurs. They also have a pest in Brooklyn.
The Nets, hardly a championship contender, took the Warriors into overtime last month and beat them at in Brooklyn last season. They’ll be out to play spoiler yet again Sunday when the teams meet at Barclays Center.
The Warriors (21-0) are seeking to extend their season opening win streak while lifting their overall streak to 25. They’ll be playing on the second night of a back-to-back set; they played at Toronto on Saturday.
The Nets (5-14), who opened the season by losing nine of 10 games, want nothing more than to regain respectability. What could better provide a semblance of that than knocking off the defending champs?
Warriors by 10.
MATCHUP TO WATCH
Festus Ezeli/Andrew Bogut vs. Brook Lopez. Bogut missed Saturday’s game at Toronto but is available to play for this game. Both will have to avoid foul trouble against a big man who thrives in the post. Will they be able to?
Warriors: 10-0. Nets 4-6.
Warriors: C Andrew Bogut (back spasms) is available to play. F Harrison Barnes (L ankle sprain) and F Kevon Looney (hip surgery) are listed as out.
Nets: F Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (R ankle sprain), F/C Andrea Bargnani (L hamstring tightness) and F Chris McCullough (R knee surgery rehab) are listed as out.
The Warriors have won five of the last seven meetings, including a 107-99 victory in overtime on Nov. 14. But the Warriors have not beaten the Nets in Brooklyn since Dec. 7, 2012.