The Bad: Size proves an issue once again
Again, this game was a lot closer than it needed to be down the stretch. The Warriors’ 14 turnovers played a big role in that, but this team’s inherent size issues were placed under a magnifying glass against a younger and bigger Rockets squad.
The Rockets enjoyed a 46-24 advantage in points in the paint, and Houston’s bigger guards utilized their athleticism and physicality to consistently get downhill for easy looks in close.
It’s important to remember that their former Defensive Player of the Year is still working his way back from injury, and a fully healthy Green will surely bolster the Warriors’ interior resistance. Still, Golden State is undersized at nearly every position, and they’ll have to make up for their physical deficiencies by outworking their opponents on a night-to-night basis.
The Ugly: Andrew Wiggins’ rough start continues
Steve Kerr and the rest of the Warriors’ coaching staff have the utmost confidence in Andrew Wiggins. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that ‘Wiggs’ was arguably the second most important player for Golden State during their championship run a little over a year ago.
However, Wiggins has endured a rough start to the season, characterized by subpar shooting splits and a limited impact at the offensive end of the floor. In his first three games, the Canadian has averaged just 11.3 points on 37.1% shooting from the field and 11.1% from three. Those are some concerning splits, and while it’s only fair to assume that his poor shooting will eventually correct itself, some of his misses have been way off the mark.
The Warriors rely on Wiggins to not only guard the opposing team’s best player but to consistently space the floor on offense as well, and they will need his shooting to improve sooner rather than later. Look for the veteran wing to steadily regain his rhythm as the season develops.