for this game

Warriors-Suns Preview

Nov 26, 2015 - 8:04 PM The Golden State Warriors realize that, eventually, they're going to lose a game.

But the reigning NBA champions continue to live in the moment as they try to further their record-setting start Friday night in a road matchup with the Phoenix Suns.

The Warriors became the first team in NBA history to start 16-0 after demolishing the Los Angeles Lakers 111-77 on Tuesday. It was a status quo win for Golden State, which has 11 victories by double digits and comfortably leads the league in scoring at 114.3 points per game.

Making the start all the more impressive, coach Steve Kerr has yet to be on the sidelines as he continues to recover from offseason back surgeries, ceding game-day control to assistant Luke Walton. Kerr's impact on each victory, however, is clearly evident.

''Coach has been great, even behind the scenes. You can tell Luke is kind of an extension from him,'' guard Klay Thompson said after Kerr left a white-board message listing the team's four tenets of joy, mindfulness, compassion and competition. ''It's great to hear from him again just to reiterate what we're all about. That's what's carried us over the top and we want to continue to do those four things.''

Thompson had 16 points Wednesday, nearly matching his season average, but that's well off his career-high 21.7 per game of last season. Stephen Curry had 24 points with nine assists and again enters this game well-rested, since the starters didn't play in the fourth quarter against the Lakers.

''So far we've been unblemished and done everything we need to do to get 16 wins. Hope to make that 17 on Friday,'' Curry said. ''There most likely will come a time we take a loss and have to deal with the emotions of that, just like we have in years past.''

Curry's 70 points in his last three represents his lowest three-game total of the season, but he still easily leads the league with 32.1 points per game and has a 62.7 effective field-goal percentage. He's made 10 of 31 from 3-point range in that span, dropping his season mark to 43.1 percent.

The high-powered offense has drawn attention away from the club's strong defensive play. The Warriors have held opponents to a league-low 28.7 percent from 3-point range, and the 91 3s they've allowed are only 13 more than Curry has made.

Golden State has given up 95.8 points per 100 possessions, third-best in the league but an improvement from its NBA-leading 98.2 in 2014-15.

The "Splash Brothers" and the Warriors' perimeter defense should receive a challenge Friday since Phoenix has a high-scoring backcourt duo of its own in Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight. The pair is averaging 44.6 points, third-highest among guards behind Curry and Thompson (48.3) and Portland's Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum (45.0).

They had 47 and 17 assists Wednesday night, but Bledsoe was 5 of 16 from the field as the Suns (7-8) lost 120-114 at home to New Orleans. It was Phoenix's third straight defeat, with defense being the primary culprit - the Suns have allowed 113.3 points and 49.6 percent shooting during the skid.

''We gave them three 30-point quarters,'' coach Jeff Hornacek said. ''Usually we say if you give up two it's a loss. It's a long game and we didn't put our foot on the gas. I thought our guys just relaxed and we gave them the confidence.''

The Warriors won the final three games between the teams last season after Thompson sat out a 107-95 loss Nov. 9, 2014 with a sprained right hand. Curry averaged 29.3 points in the four games and made 21 of 43 from 3-point range, while Thompson contributed 21.0 points a contest in the three wins.