With everything sewn up except the NBA's best overall record, the Golden State Warriors would love nothing more than to end a heated rival's seven-game winning streak.
In a potential second-round playoff preview Tuesday night, the Warriors will try to extend the league's longest current run to 10 and snap a four-game road skid against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Golden State (60-13), which had already clinched the Pacific Division, locked up the top seed in the Western Conference and set a franchise record for victories with Saturday's 108-95 win at Milwaukee.
The Warriors aren't showing signs of letting up, winning by an average of 18.3 points on their best streak since a 16-game tear Nov. 13-Dec. 14. They lead East-best Atlanta by 4 1/2 games with nine left in the race for home-court advantage throughout the postseason.
"We still have a lot of work to do and we still have goals to accomplish," said guard Klay Thompson, who had 21 points.
While coach Steve Kerr hasn't made a habit of resting players, he sat forwards Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala on Saturday. However, it might be difficult to rest more in a matchup between two of the league's hottest teams.
The Clippers (49-25) have been on a roll since Blake Griffin (elbow surgery) returned from a 15-game absence, winning their last seven by an average of 14.9 points for their second-longest streak of the season.
J.J. Redick led the way with 27 points and went 5 for 6 from 3-point range, while Griffin and Chris Paul added 21 apiece in Sunday's 119-106 win at Boston. Griffin was sore after taking a shot to his elbow, but isn't expected to miss any time.
Paul has averaged 23.3 points and 11.7 assists over the past six to help the surging Clippers - currently fifth in the West - move within one game of third-place Memphis.
"We've been playing with a good rhythm, going back home now," Paul told the team's official website. "We need to win worse than (the Warriors) do."
There has been tension between the clubs since the Clippers won a physical seven-game series in the first round of last year's playoffs. After dropping the last three at Staples Center in that series, Golden State has lost 11 of 14 there.
The Warriors went 6 of 28 from 3-point range in a 100-86 loss in Los Angeles on Christmas Day. However, they've gone a combined 25 for 47 from beyond the arc in winning twice at home, 121-104 on Nov. 5 and 106-98 on March 8.
"(Kerr) told me he didn't like me," Clippers coach Doc Rivers joked after the last meeting. "We're the last team to knock them out, and they know that.
"So I think that adds to it."
Golden State averages league highs of 109.8 points and 47.8 percent shooting, while Los Angeles is second with 106.6 and 47.3. The Warriors also shoot an NBA-best 39.7 percent from 3-point range and the Clippers are third at 37.5.
Stephen Curry has hit 24 of 38 while scoring 30.0 per game over his past four. The MVP candidate, though, has totaled 26 on 8-of-21 shooting in his last two against Los Angeles.
Jamal Crawford was the Clippers' leading scorer in their first two matchups, but he's likely out due to a deep calf bruise. Austin Rivers stepped up with a team-high 22 points while Griffin was sidelined earlier this month.
"We want to go out there and compete, because they're the team to beat," forward Glen Davis said of the Warriors. "We've got to go through them on the West side."