The Golden State Warriors hung with the Toronto Raptors for three quarters, but everything went downhill in the fourth quarter as the Raptors came awayG with a 104-98 victory on Sunday afternoon.
DeMar Derozan led the Raptors with 32 points, while Stephen Curry’s 34 points kept the Warriors afloat, but could not carry them across the finish line.
It was Derozan who made two jumpers during a 9-0 Raptors run early in the fourth quarter to turn a 86-83 deficit into a 92-86 lead in the blink of an eye. The Warriors’ defense was non-existant during the fourth, allowing open shots and layups to the Raptors.
Despite all that, they still had opportunities to win the game, but turned the ball over at crucial times down the stretch. Down 97-95 with three minutes to play, the Warriors came up empty on four consecutive possessions: Klay Thompson missed a wide-open three, then two turnovers by Curry and a bad pass by Andrew Bogut added to their misery. Meanwhile, the Raptors added on to their lead. Derozan’s jumper put them up 103-95 with 49 seconds remaining.
Tale of the Tape
- Field-goal percentage: 42.0% (37-88)
- Three-point percentage: 34.8% (8-23)
- Rebounds: 41
- Assists: 25
- Turnovers: 13
- Bench points: 20
- Field-goal percentage: 48.1% (38-79)
- Three-point percentage: 36.4% (8-22)
- Rebounds: 39
- Assists: 28
- Turnovers: 9
- Bench points: 32
Who’s to Blame
A lot of people will put the blame on Mark Jackson, who played Stephen Curry the entire second half, and Curry responded by running out of steam at the end. He also took out Draymond Green down the stretch, instead opting to play Andrew Bogut during crunch time. Obviously, playing a defensive-minded center when your team needs offense late in the game may not be the best choice. Jackson has been the target of a lot of criticism this season, and this game certainly didn’t help.
If you want to focus on the players, then look at Andre Iguodala making a grand total of two field goals for eight points, and Klay Thompson going 4-for-15 from the field, including a miss on a critical three-pointer that could have given the Warriors the lead late in the game. Iguodala also made a costly error, losing control of the ball on a fastbreak with 16 seconds left that in essence ended the game.
To sum up, besides Harrison Barnes’ 11 points off the bench, no other Warriors besides Curry or David Lee contributed much offensively. Is that to blame, or is it Mark Jackson?
Good to Know
For all the talk about #Warriors being fine in playoffs b/c they’re good on road… Well, now 15-3 on road vs. sub .500 & 3-11 vs > .500 teams
— John Dickinson (@JDJohnDickinson) March 2, 2014
Tweet of the Night
Here’s Jermaine O’Neal from the US/Canada border to tell us how the Warriors need to bring it every night if they want to win a championship
— Bay Area Sports Guy (@BASportsGuy) March 2, 2014
FYI – Jermaine O’Neal did not make the trip to Canada because of passport issues. Yes, really.
What’s on Tap
The Warriors’ road trip continues on to Indiana as they take on the NBA’s best team in the Pacers on Tuesday.
Tags: Golden State Warriors