If the Golden State Warriors learned anything from their loss to the Rockets on Friday, they certainly didn’t prove it tonight, falling 106-102 to the Phoenix Suns in familiar fashion.
Yeah, familiar as in a team that didn’t show up in the first half and had to make a comeback in the second half just to get back in the game, which they would eventually lose.
On Sunday, the Warriors (13-12) fell behind 59-46 the Suns (14-9) in the first half, with Phoenix capitalizing on points off turnovers and poor shooting by Golden State. The Warriors did close the half on a 7-0 run, and took advantage of the Suns’ foul trouble in the third quarter to rally to within one at the start of the fourth.
But they would never be able to chase down the Suns. Marcus Morris, Channing Frye, and Eric Bledsoe were on fire throughout the final frame as the Suns maintained the advantage. The Warriors closed the gap to 102-100 with a minute remaining after a Stephen Curry three-pointer, but were unable to convert on their next two possessions, and ran out of time.
Tale of the Tape
- Field Goals: 42.5% (34-80)
- 3-Pointers: 50.0% (11-22)
- Rebounds: 50
- Assists: 19
- Turnovers: 20
- Field Goals: 44.3% (35-79)
- 3-Pointers: 48.1% (13-27)
- Rebounds: 45
- Assists: 17
- Turnovers: 12
Turning the ball over 20 times and allowing the opponent to score 17 points off giveaways will not often result in a win. The Warriors struggled in the first half because of turnovers, and made several mistakes down the stretch.
Iguodala’s Absence Evident
The Warriors could use Andre Iguodala right about now. He has been out for the past 12 games with a strained hamstring, and the team hasn’t looked the same without him.
Iguodala provided so much for the Warriors in that he was the team’s best defender, could handle the ball, and did all the little things that are often taken for granted. Thus, it’s no surprise that Golden State has been allowing more points since his absence. Curry is also being worn down, since he has to handle the ball for most of the game. And perhaps most importantly, the rotation is altered and it hasn’t brought good results. Head coach Mark Jackson has turned to guys such as Draymond Green, Marreese Speights, and even Kent Bazemore to fill Iguodala’s void — Green getting the biggest vote of confidence — and none of those three provide anything close to what Igoudala can do.
Good to Know
Phoenix wins, 106-102. The Suns snap a six-game losing streak vs. the Warriors and have now won 5-straight overall.
— GSWStats (@gswstats) December 16, 2013
If the playoffs began today, the Warriors wouldn’t even be in it. In fact, they’re 1.5 games out of a playoff spot, and for a team that many expected to compete for a championship this season, Golden State has underperformed in a big way thus far.
But there’s no need to panic…just yet. The Warriors have a pretty favorable schedule in the coming weeks, and should be getting Iguodala back in a week or two. However, if they still struggle and start falling under .500, it may be time for a red alert by the bay.
What’s on Tap
The Warriors will take on the Pelicans at home on Tuesday. They narrowly escaped New Orleans on the road earlier this season, as Eric Gordon missed a potential game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer.