Miami Heat @ Golden State Warriors
In what was billed to be a hotly contested battle between the NBA’s reigning champion Miami Heat and the in form Warriors, LeBron James reminded us why he is the best basketballer on the planet, stealing the show with 25 points, 10 assists 7 rebounds and a career high 2 milestones as the Heat trounced G.State 92-75.
James recorded his first milestone of the night at the 6 minute mark of the 1st quarter when he threw an alley-oop pass to Dwayne Wade, marking his 5,000th career assist. The assist mark however was just a curtain raiser to LeBron’s more important achievement of the night; becoming the youngest player in NBA history to score 20,000 points, a feat he polished off midway through the 2nd quarter with a nice drive to the basket and one handed jumper.
“It means everything. It means a lot. … I try to give everything to the game, and hopefully it continues to give back to me.” said James on his milestone.
The Warriors looked out of touch all night due to the lack of their main playmaker and scorer in Stephen Curry, who was a late withdrawal due to a rolled ankle sustained in the morning shoot around. Right from the jump his absence had a clear impact, with replacement PG Jarrett Jack having 2 turnovers in the first 30 seconds of play. TO’s seemed to be the trend of the night for GSW as they notched up 21 in total, 7 above their season average.
The game gave a handy insight as to how valuable Curry is as a leader for the club. The Warriors had their worst offensive output of the season with 75 points as David Lee (guarded by LeBron James at times throughout the night), who averages 19.7ppg on the season, could only manage 12 points, while Jack and Carl Landry were the only other players in double figures for the Dubs. Curry seems to be crucial to the performance of sharp shooting wing teammates Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes, who both had poor games offensively.
The Heat had five players in double figure scoring, lead by James and Dwayne Wade, who had 15 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and a season high 5 steals in what was a good bounce back game after being benched the whole last quarter in Miami’s loss to Utah Monday night. The Heat play the 2nd leg of a West coast back-to-back against LA tonight, which should be a good test as Dwight Howard and the Lakers look to be finally finding some form.
The Warriors moving forward will be looking to get Curry back into the lineup as soon as possible before they see themselves sliding down a tough west conference ladder. With the Spurs, Clippers and Thunder marking 3 of their next 4 games, Dubs fans would hope the Curry ankle problem isn’t as serious has it’s proved to be in the past.
Scroll down for box scores….
Upcoming games for the Dubs:
- Friday, Jan 18th, @ San Antonio
- Saturday, Jan 19th @ New Orleans
- Monday, Jan 21st vs. LA Clippers