(SportsNetwork.com) - In a potential playoff preview a month from now, the Golden State Warriors welcome the New Orleans Pelicans to Oracle Arena on Friday night.
This possible matchup may be tainted a bit since Golden State is already without All-Star guard Klay Thompson, but New Orleans was dealt a blow when Anthony Davis missed its last game with an ankle injury.
The Pelicans found out before their contest Thursday they would be without Davis, who rolled his left ankle during shootaround and had to sit out.
"If he could play, he would play," said New Orleans coach Monty Williams. "There would be no holding back. We're not in that position."
Omer Asik suffered a calf injury as well during the game, but the Pelicans still had a shot to go ahead late, only to come up short.
New Orleans lost to the Phoenix Suns, 74-72.
Despite the lack of depth, the Pelicans led 66-64 midway through the fourth quarter. They missed their next six shots, however, and the Suns' 7-0 run, capped by Brandan Wright's emphatic putback slam, gave Phoenix a 71-66 lead.
Norris Cole pulled the Pelicans within two with a 3-pointer, and after Markieff Morris hit a step-back jumper, Eric Gordon hit a triple as well with 46.9 seconds to play.
New Orleans got the ball back with a chance to go ahead, but Tyreke Evans' contested shot in the lane fell short.
The Warriors own the best mark in the Western Conference and are the only team out west to clinch a playoff berth. Golden State owns a 7 1/2-game lead over the Memphis Grizzlies, so it is most definitely going to be the No. 1 seed come playoffs.
The Pelicans are in a battle for the eighth and final postseason berth in the conference. New Orleans is a game behind the Oklahoma City Thunder for the No. 8 seed.
The Warriors are in the midst of a three-game winning streak coinciding with a six-game homestand. Golden State knocked off the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers, then faced a much stiffer challenge when the Atlanta Hawks visited Oracle Arena.
Golden State had little trouble dispatching the Eastern Conference's best team. The Warriors prevailed, 114-95, Wednesday.
Stephen Curry had an off night and Thompson has a bad ankle, but the Warriors still blew out the Hawks. Despite shooting just 4-of-11, Curry still finished with 16 points and dished out 12 assists for Golden State, which has won eight of its last nine games.
Thompson is out with an ankle injury.
Harrison Barnes netted 25 points and Andre Iguodala provided 21 points and six assists.
"His defense was spectacular tonight," Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said of Iguodala.
Andrew Bogut pulled down 14 boards in the triumph.
The Warriors closed out the third quarter on a 14-3 run to blow the game open. Iguodala's layup in the waning moments of the frame staked the hosts to an 83-64 advantage heading into the fourth.
Golden State led by as many as 29 in the final frame.
The Warriors welcome the Utah Jazz and Washington Wizards on this stay.
Golden State has won nine straight over the Pelicans, including four in a row at home.