The Warriors are not winning. Losing to the San Antonio Spurs for the 13th consecutive time, the Spurs won the tight contest 101-95. The loss essentially makes the Warriors 1-2. The loss also claimed another victim, as Stephen Curry rolled his ankle, yet again. Most of the time, when people roll their ankles, it is by their own fault. There are times, when they land on other player’s feet and roll, but most of the time, they end up doing it on their own. Curry was faking a long pass from the backcourt and landed awkwardly on his right foot, rolling his ankle.
This happened in the third quarter. A key quarter as the Warriors were only outscored by three. They had led in the first and second before the fourth quarter came around. In the fourth, the old but veteran Spurs took advantage of Curry’s absence and outscored the Warriors 30-21. Led by Tony Parker’s 21 points, the Spurs went on a 9-0 run to take the lead back after Monta Ellis hit two free throws to put the Warriors up 88-80.
With his battery mate out injured, Ellis continued his leadership for the Warriors. He poured in 38 points while dishing out seven assists and pickpocketing into two steals. Before his injury, Curry was contributing with 20 points and eight assists. David Lee, who had been out the previous game, had a quiet double double with 13 points and 10 boards. Rookie Klay Thompson added 10 points.
Again, Dorell Wright was a disappearing act. Same with Andris Beidrins. Beidrins only had four points and five rebounds. If a big man, whose primary job is not to score, he needs to make it up in other areas. Only five rebounds and only three block shots. He’s got to find a way to make a difference out on the court, if it is not in points.
Wright on the other hand was a complete non-factor. He had no points, only shot three times, only had three boards, two assists and one steal. All in 26 minutes of play. Mark Jackson may need to shuffle the starting line-up and put Thompson as a starter while Wright comes off the bench. His play has been atrocious and he hasn’t made a difference on either side of the ball.
Kwame Brown had eight points while grabbing seven boards. While his numbers weren’t staggering, he managed to be engaged in the game. The main thing to ask him is to improve his foul shooting. He shot 25%. His six free throw misses could have essential tied the game. Overall, the team only shot 64% from the stripe. That isn’t going to win games.
The Warriors need everyone, from ALL the starters to many persons on their bench. The Spurs had four starters in double figures, while all their bench players had at least two points. They also happened to shoot the three better last night.
But shooting and how many times a team gets to the foul line are things that no one can control. Things that can be controlled were not. The Warriors gave up nine offensive boards while only tallying five for themselves. They also lost the rebounding game 45-37. That is eight extra boards, eight extra possessions.
The Warriors need to find a way for everyone to contribute and it doesn’t just mean on the scoreboard. They need to find their identity and they need to find it fast. Because before they know it, All-Star weekend will be here and that means, halfway through this shorten season.