The two losses from this weekend put the Warriors far from .500. In fact, the Warriors have won about 33% of their games. Eight games, six losses, two wins, hardly a turnaround from past ghosts. Up in Sacramento, former Warrior coach, Keith Smart, seems to have found a way to connect with DeMarcus Cousins and but are in no better shape than the Warriors. Is the California coast a curse to the NBA. Only the Lakers have reigned supreme, but their other fellow CA teams have often disappointed.
Speaking of the Lakers, one of the losses from this weekend were at the gracious hands of the Lakers, 97-90. Coming off a beat down by the Portland Trailblazers, you knew the Lakers looked to bounce back and unfortunately it was against the Warriors. ESPN’s article on the game focused on how tired the Lakers were and how injury depleted the Warriors are. And the Warriors are very depleted, especially the scoring front.
No matter how small or lack of size Stephen Curry is, the presence of him out there does cause a concern for opponents. You leave him open, I’m betting he’ll hit a couple wide open threes for you to watch. Try to double on the pick and roll, he’ll hit the big man, and if anything, his ability to take someone to the rim will cause other defenders some hesitation in whether to help or stay with their own man. Because Curry can hit the three (and beyond, this year in five games he’s at 41%) so well, that it will give room for Monta Ellis to operate and score.
And it was Ellis who took the burden of lack scoring on his shoulders. Monta was phenomenal against the Lakers. With little help from his fellow teammates, he basically took on the whole Laker team. And he wasn’t even getting any foul calls. The tv commentator said it best, whenever someone looks at Kobe wrong a whistle is blown and a foul is given. But when Monta drives to the basket, gets knocked down, the refs swallow their whistle and the action heads the other way. I can’t even blame Monta for getting a “T.” The calls and the blown calls were a little ridiculous.
The Warriors were called for ten more fouls (28/18) than the Lakers, resulting in more free throws for them (29-19). Both teams were atrocious from the line as the Warriors only sank 52% of their FREE throws. Those nine misses could have won the game.
Ellis finished the game with 18 points, 10 assists, three rebounds and five steals. David Lee contributed with 15 points and 11 rebounds but also had seven turnovers. As a team, the Warriors had 20 turnovers, only one more than the Lakers, so they relatively took care of the ball well. Kwame Brown, who was inserted into the starting line-up, did well on the offensive end scoring 13 points but only grabbed three rebounds. A big guy like him will have to own the boards a lot more, especially the defensive end. The Lakers grabbed 15 o-boards. Finally, Dorell Wright wants to contribute to this Warrior team. He finished with 10 points, but that is basically it. He grabbed three boards but so did two Warrior bench players who played 1o less minutes then him. He’ll need to step it up soon or Klay Thompson is about to grab his starting spot.
Thompson has been a nice surprise to a weak bench. The addition of Nate Robinson was to add a little sugar to Thompson’s punch (although it was more cause Curry has been injured like no other this season). In both losses to San Antonio and the Lakers, he’s shown he can score, no matter the situation. He posted another double digit effort in contributing with 14 points and hitting two threes.