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OAKLAND – The Warriors are not toying with opponents, nor are they deliberately torturing those who dare to enter Oracle Arena.
It only appears that way.
Their latest victims, the Cavaliers, went down as so many others, with their share of competitive moments and even a glimmer of hope before they were blinded by Warriors defense and buried under flurry of points.
The Warriors' 112-94 win over Cleveland on Friday finished a 6-0 homestand during which the Warriors rediscovered themselves and seemed to enjoy it. They moved with purpose, passed efficiently, shot well enough and unleashed torrents of energy that overcame every valiant visitor.
[INSTANT REPLAY: Warriors speed past Cavs for 14th straight home win]
What was a close game well into the second quarter was at once seized by the Warriors, carried away and stashed in their victory column.
"It was a good win for us," said Stephen Curry, who finished with 23 points, 10 assists and two steals. "We had to fight for it. They played well, shot the ball and had some individuals that came out and impacted the game. But we stuck to who we are for 48 minutes. We feel like we wore them down and opened up the game down the stretch with solid execution and being us."
The Warriors (29-5) beat Cleveland – without LeBron James – with fundamental uptempo basketball. They recorded 35 assists on 43 baskets, outscored the Cavs 36-3 in fast-break points, forcing 16 turnovers (committing 13) while holding Cleveland to 40.7 percent shooting from the field.
The Warriors during the six-game homestand averaged 32.8 assists and 12.5 turnovers per game. The offensive flow and rhythm lost during Christmas week in Los Angeles has been recaptured and is flourishing.
"We really kind of found our game again," coach Steve Kerr said of the homestand.
The Warriors lifted their perfect record against Eastern Conference teams to 12-0 and, moreover, improved their home record to 16-1 – including the last 14 in a row.
And it's coming with relative ease. The Warriors during their six-game win streak have won by an average of 22.2 points. Most of the games were close, until the Warriors shifted into another gear.
The Cavs led by 2 (66-64) with 6:43 left in the third quarter before the Warriors finished the quarter on a 20-10 run to take over.
"They spread you out; they're hard to guard," Kerr said. "But when all is said and done, they shot 40 percent from the field, 30 percent from 3. It feels like when we just stay with it, eventually we can get our defense going."
Cleveland (19-18) shot 36 percent in the second quarter, 38.1 percent in the third. The Warriors outscored them 54-44 in those quarters.
"We know that if we just stay the course and continue to play solid basketball, things will eventually turn," Draymond Green said.
They turned in favor of the Warriors, against the Cavs and every other team to enter Oracle Arena these days.
Green's stat line, excluding 5-for-13 shooting, was strong: 10 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists.
Klay Thompson's red-hot first half, when he scored 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting, including 4-of-6 from beyond the arc.
Curry's all-around game: 23 points (8-of-15 shooting), 10 assists, two steals and two turnovers.
Justin Holiday provided a spark off the bench, playing solid defense and scoring 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting.
Green endured a rough 3-point shooting night, missing all six treys he attempted.
Thompson in the third quarter sustained a forehead laceration that required seven stitches. He did, however, return in the fourth quarter.
The Warriors were determined to get right after coming home bearing the burden of a mini-slump of successive losses. They went back to school, returned to a practice routine and put all their pieces back together. They used this homestand to regroup and remind everyone of how threatening they can be when at their best. It's an impressive show indeed.