Golden State Warriors shatter NBA record with 55-point quarter, setting the stage for an epic playoff run

The Golden State Warriors needed a win in the regular-season finale to clinch a playoff spot in the Western Conference. Just 12 minutes into Sunday’s matchup with the tanking Portland Trail Blazers, the defending champions had already made sure they’d be finishing 2022-23 with a victory—even making NBA history in the process.

The Warriors exploded for an incredible 55 first-quarter points against the Blazers, the most any team has ever scored in the opening stanza.

That was hardly the only history Golden State made early in Sunday’s game, either.

The Dubs shot a scorching 12-of-18 from deep in the first quarter, tied for for the most triples any team has ever splashed in a single quarter, exploiting the Blazers’ inexperienced cast of young bench players and G League call-ups.

Klay Thompson led that shooting onslaught, draining five threes by himself in the game’s first five minutes to become just the third player in league history to make 300 long balls in a single season, joining Steph Curry and James Harden. Not bad for a 33-year-old whose career many feared was over when he suffered his second serious leg injury in as many years in fall 2020. Thompson’s rough early-season struggles are easy to forget now, too.

Unfortunately for Golden State, blowing out the Blazers is hardly clear indication this team is ready to reach its peak in the playoffs.  Portland has been brazenly tanking for weeks.

Momentum and vibes matter even more under the postseason microscope, though, and it’s no exaggeration to say the Warriors—with Andrew Wiggins’ return imminent—are in a better place now than they’ve been at any other point in 2022-23. Golden State seems primed to show in the first round of the playoffs.

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