Warriors Survive Late Push from Nets, win 118-111
After an incredible comeback win over the Philadelphia 76ers, the Golden State Warriors (12-4) traveled to New York to take on the Brooklyn Nets (6-9). In the second half of a back-to-back, the Warriors were looking to build off of a very strong second half performance against the Sixers. The Warriors were going to have to play this game without Kevin Durant, as he was sitting out with a sprained left ankle. The Warriors would go on to win 118-111.
The first quarter saw the Warriors start off a little slow, but they were still able to grab a double digit lead. The Warriors missed four straight wide open layups, but were able to right the ship and get the offense rolling after Stephen Curry made a layup. After the opening quarter, Steph led all scorers with 13 points, and the next closest scorers on the Warriors were Nick Young and Omri Casspi, who had six points apiece. The Warriors forced the Nets to turn the ball over 5 times, and were able to capitalize on that by shooting 57.1% from deep in the opening quarter. The Warriors led after the first, 32-20.
The second quarter saw the Warriors extend their lead from 12 points, to 22 points. The Warriors played great defense throughout the entire half, blocking nine shots, stealing the ball five times, and holding the Nets to just 28% shooting. Stephen Curry continued to lead the charge offensively with 22 points, while also grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out four assists. Klay Thompson added 10 points on 5-10 shooting, while grabbing seven rebounds. As a team, the Warriors shot 48% from the field in the first half, including 37.5% from three. The Warriors led at the half, 64-42.
In the third quarter, the Brooklyn Nets shot the ball a lot better than in the first half. Their shooting percentage rose from 28% to 37%, and they scored 42 points in the third quarter. Stephen Curry was able to stay hot for the Warriors, raising his scoring total for the game to 37 points, while grabbing 10 rebounds and dishing out seven assists. The Nets were able to cut a 24-point lead to a 14-point lead, and the Warriors still led after the third quarter, 98-84.
The Warriors were unable to get any consistent offense going in the fourth quarter, and had to rely on their defense to pick up the slack and try to hold off a late run by the Nets. The Nets exploded in the second half, especially Allen Crabbe, who had 20 points in the second half. Steph fouled out with a couple minutes left in the game, because he gets treated like a G-league player by the refs. The Warriors survived the late charge from the Nets, and won 118-111.
Stephen Curry led the Warriors on offense throughout the entire game, finishing with 39 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists, and 3 steals. Klay Thompson also had a very solid game, finishing with 23 points, while only attempting one three-pointer for the entire game. Another key performance came from Omri Casspi, who was starting his first game for the Warriors in the absence of Kevin Durant, and scored 12 points and grabbed 8 rebounds.
My main takeaway from this game is that the Brooklyn Nets are an incredibly scrappy team. I predicted that they’d be better than a lot of people thought this year, and it looks like I am going to be correct. They have no incentive to tank, as all their draft picks for the foreseeable future belong to other teams, and they go out and play hard every night. They have beaten the Cleveland Cavaliers, and they are able to stay in games by shooting the ball as much as humanly possible until the ball starts to go through the hoop. I think that the draft pick the Cavaliers got in return for Kyrie Irving will not be as valuable as they originally thought, because the Nets have the ability to compete with any team.
The Warriors play their next game on Wednesday, November 22, against the Oklahoma City Thunder at 5 p.m.