The Warriors knew they'd be in tough against the Jazz in Salt Lake City. They could not have known they'd be facing an offensive machine.
The Jazz, known for defense, rained offense down upon the Warriors, who somehow shook it off with a late rally and, thanks to a Jonas Jerebko tip-in with 0.3 seconds remaining, walked out of Vivint Smart Home Arena with a 124-123 win Friday night.
Utah shot 19-of-46 from beyond the arc, while the Warriors were 10-of-19 from deep. That, along with free throws (18 for the Warriors, 29 for the Jazz), shoved the Warriors into such position they needed a furious rally.
Here are three takeaways from the game between Western Conference powers:
Curry and Durant just too much
The Jazz played a fabulous game, taking a lead midway through the second quarter and maintaining until halfway through the fourth. Utah, scorching the nets from all over, led by as much as 16 in the third.
And, still, Utah got burned.
That's because Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant -- along with some wicked team defense in the fourth quarter -- came along to make a game of it.
Curry scored 31 points, including 22 in the second half.
Durant scored a game-high 38 points, with 24 coming in the first to keep the Warriors from being blown of the floor.
When Curry and Durant are cooking, it almost doesn't matter who well the other team is playing. That's a harsh lesson to learn, but it's one the Jazz found out.
Draymond the firebrand
Draymond Green is the team's emotional leader. The Warriors expect him to combine fiery personality with comprehensive production. On this night, Green's temperament obscured his performance.
He engaged in a brief third-quarter skirmish with Jazz center Rudy Gobert, after which Utah power forward Derrick Favors entered with a shove. The result was a personal foul on Green, along with double technical fouls, one for Green and one for Favors.
Not long after that, Green took offense to some over-aggressive crowding on the part of Jazz forward Jae Crowder. Green, trying to create space, delivered a forearm and was whistled for a foul with 5:46 left in the quarter.
Green was immediately replaced by Kevon Looney who remained for the rest of third quarter.
The Warriors are an appreciably better team when Green plays well, creative on offense and disruptive on defense. He was not on his game through three quarters -- 7 points, six rebounds, five assists and three turnovers -- but recovered well in the fourth as part of a strong surge by the Warriors.
Thompson still dormant
Klay Thompson's sizzling preseason, when he shot 55.2 percent from beyond the arc, has given way to a dormant start.
He was 4-of-9 against Utah, on the heels of 5-of-20 shooting in the season opener on Tuesday. Moreover, Thompson was practically invisible on offense for much of the game, most pointedly in the fourth quarter.
Thompson finished with 12 points in 36 minutes.
Because they have Durant and Curry, the Warriors can win games without Thompson's offense. But it's much, much tougher when Thompson isn't contributing at his typical level.