The Bee Sports staff tracks the Warriors’ progress toward breaking the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls’ record 72 wins, using a measuring stick from the past to gauge the present. Here’s where the teams stood 79 games into the season:
April 7, 2016: Stephen Curry scored 27 points and the Golden State Warriors became the second team to win 70 games in a season by beating the San Antonio Spurs 112-101 on Thursday night, wrapping up home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
The Warriors bounced back from their second loss in three home games two nights earlier against Minnesota and joined the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls as the only teams to win 70 games. Golden State can break Chicago’s single-season record of 72 wins by sweeping the final three games, including a rematch in San Antonio on Sunday.
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Kawhi Leonard scored 23 points for the Spurs, who will enter the playoffs next weekend as the second seed in the West.
Player of the game: Curry, who shot 11 of 19 from the field and added nine assists and five rebounds.
Quote: “It’s always difficult, those are two great players (Curry and Klay Thompson) and they involve their teammates, it’s an unselfish team. (Harrison) Barnes had a great game to go along with it, Draymond (Green) was great, so it was a team effort.” – Spurs coach Gregg Popovich
Warriors’ record: 70-9
April 16, 1996: The Chicago Bulls stamped a big “70” on a season of superlatives. It just wasn’t the decisive victory they wanted.
The Bulls barely got past the lowly Milwaukee Bucks with a 86-80 victory and didn’t exactly look like the most dominating team in NBA history.
Still, the Bulls surpassed the previous best record in league history, 69-13 by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1971-72.
The Bulls shot just 39 percent, didn’t get a spectacular game from any of their superstars and needed a scoreless final four minutes from the Bucks to make history.
Hundreds of Bulls fans made the 90-mile drive to Milwaukee and bought tickets from scalpers asking $200 per ticket.
Player of the game: Michael Jordan, who put up relatively pedestrian numbers with 22 points on 9-of-27 shooting, but made a big play on defense, blocking a three-point attempt by Johnny Newman with 16 seconds left that could have pulled the Bucks within one.
Quote: “One thing we committed to in the locker room before the game was if they did get 70, they wouldn’t get it easy.” – Milwaukee forward Terry Cummings
Bulls’ record: 70-9
From The Associated Press, compiled by Jon Schultz