Royce ONeale #00 of the Nets celebrates a basket in...

Royce ONeale #00 of the Nets celebrates a basket in the fourth quarter against Golden State at Chase Center on January 22, 2023 in San Francisco. Credit: Getty Images

SAN FRANCISCO — Royce O’Neale hit a go-ahead three-pointer with 28.5 seconds left as the Nets came back from a 17-point deficit to beat Golden State, 120-16, on Sunday night.

After Steph Curry’s two free throws with 1:12 remaining gave Golden State a 116-115 lead, Kyrie Irving drove, was smothered and found O’Neale.

“They did a great job of staying on my body, keeping the game physical, making it tough,’’ said Irving, who had 38 points, nine assists and seven rebounds. “I felt like my teammates had a lot of great looks . . . Royce being wide open, I felt like that was the best shot for our team, so I gave up the ball, trusted him to make it, and luckily it went in.”

“Kyrie had been getting to the basket, hitting tough shots, and at that moment, he drove, two people double-teamed and he found me open,’’ O‘Neale said. “I just needed to have the confidence to knock it down.”

Irving, who was coming off a 48-point performance on Friday against Utah, hit two free throws with 14.3 seconds remaining to give the Nets a 120-116 lead.  

Nic Claxton contributed career highs of 24 points and 15 rebounds and also blocked three shots.

Curry had 26 points, seven assists and six rebounds, Jonathan Kuminga scored 20 points and Jordan Poole added 17 for Golden State, which went ahead 70-53, fell behind by four and then went ahead 106-93 with 6:57 to play.

Joe Harris’ three-pointer tied it at 112 and Irving’s three-point play gave the Nets a 115-114 lead.

Said Golden State coach Steve Kerr: “You give a team like that some life, they’re really good.”  — AP

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