Warriors get their 50th Win of the Season, Beat Brooklyn Nets 114-101
After holding on for a win over the Atlanta Hawks in their last game of a three-game road trip, the Golden State Warriors (49-14) returned home to face the Brooklyn Nets (20-44). The Warriors would be looking to extend their winning streak to six games, while the Nets were looking to get back in the win column for just their second time in 11 games. Stephen Curry would be playing after rolling his ankle against the Hawks. David West sat out with scheduled rest, and Pat McCaw was still injured, but other than that, the Warriors were at nearly full strength. The Warriors went on to win the game 114-101.
In the first quarter, Brooklyn got off to an ice cold start, but had a lead over the Warriors early because the Warriors, as we all know, have an affinity for turning the ball over. In their first three possessions, they turned the ball over twice. The Warriors were also struggling to get shots to fall, and they were having a tough time grabbing rebounds. At one point, the Nets took four straight threes on one possession because they kept grabbing offensive rebounds. After a timeout midway through the quarter though, the Warriors looked like they turned it on, and they went on a 17-2 run before the Nets called another timeout. The Warriors stopped settling for slow, half court offense and were pushing the ball up in transition. Andre Iguodala and Jordan Bell came into the game and provided an immediate burst of energy. After the second timeout of the quarter, the Warriors just kept pouring it on. This time though, it was all Steph. He managed to get to the lind, finish a layup with the left hand, and then drain a three from 32 feet out. While Steph was getting his groove on, the Warriors held the Nets scoreless, and a big part of that was the presence of Jordan Bell, who swatted away a shot with an impressive block. Steph continued to explode with another pull up three, and the Warriors were impressive to close out the quarter. Steph was the leading scorer with 13 points, and the next highest scorer was KD with seven. The Warriors held the Nets to just 27.3% shooting from the field, and they were even worse from beyond the arc, and it wasn’t due to lack of trying. They went 2/12 from deep, which is 16.7%. Their leading scorer was Spencer Dinwiddie with six points. After the first, the Warriors led 35-19.
The Warriors let the Nets get off to a nice start in the second quarter by giving the ball away on several consecutive possessions. No one on the Warriors could get anything going for the majority of the quarter, and that allowed for the Nets to heat up and get them on a roll. They stormed back and tied the game. They were doing so on the back of D’Angelo Russell, who was heating up from deep. One of the reasons for the slow start to the quarter was the new lineup that was on the floor. The lineup consisted of KD, Draymond, Nick Young, Shaun Livingston, and Andre Iguodala. The lineup did not play well in any sense of the word, and Nick Young looked lost at times. The Warriors just could not make a shot for the entirety of the quarter, finishing with a season-low 13 points. The Nets went away from the three point line and primarily drove into the paint and were getting everything they wanted. D’Angelo Russell and Caris LeVert finished the quarter with 10 points each. As a team, the Nets managed to raise their field goal percentage from 27.3% to 45.5%. The Warriors’ FG% dropped from 70% to 52.6%, and they shot the ball six less times than the Nets. Turnovers were a massive problem in the second quarter, and by the time the halftime buzzer sounded, the Warriors had 12 turnovers. Draymond Green was responsible for five of those turnovers, and failed to catch several seemingly easy passes right under the hoop that would have resulted in easy points. Steph was still the leading scorer, and he had 16 points. At the half, the Nets regained the lead, and the score was 53-48.
The Warriors got the third quarter started through their new starting center, JaVale McGee. He was doing it all early in the second half. He threw down three dunks, as well as picked up a steal to help lead the fast break. After just two minutes, his scoring total was up to 10 points. The Warriors started off hot as a team, connecting on their first seven shots. The Warriors then were able to go shot for shot with the Nets for the rest of the quarter. The Nets were not going anywhere, and clearly felt like they deserved to be where they were. Stephen Curry got hot once again though, and he hit three big threes in the quarter, and by the time the buzzer sounded, he had 33 points. He had 17 in the third quarter. D’Angelo Russell was still playing well for the Nets, and he had 19 points, which was a big reason for the Nets effectiveness. Late in the quarter, Jordan Bell blocked a shot, but landed on his ankle, and rolled it really badly. He was clearly in a lot of pain, was upset, and pounded his fist on the floor several times before having to get helped to the locker room. After three full quarters, the Warriors led the Nets, 86-80.
The fourth quarter got started on a 7-1 Warriors run. They were able to take advantage of some poor offense form the Nets and use it to get going on the break. Draymond Green hit a nice running shot before nailing a three to help build the Warrior lead. The Warriors just took off after that, and dominated in the rest of the quarter to seal a win. Klay Thompson was able to get going down the stretch in the fourth, and he finished the game with 18 points. Andre Iguodala was impressive in the fourth quarter, and threw down two monster dunks. While the score may have made the game look like a much different game than it really was. The Warriors won the game by 13 points, but until late in the third quarter it looked like they were going to lose, or at least take it down to the wire. They did hang on to win the game though, which is the most important thing. The Warriors won their 50th game of the season, beating the Nets 114-101.
Stephen Curry was the driving force for the Warriors tonight, and he finished the game with 34 points in 33 minutes. KD was the next highest scorer with 19 points, and there were several other Warriors right behind him. Klay finished with 18, Draymond had 16, and JaVale had 12. There were several moments in the game in which it seemed like all the Warriors struggled, but they managed to put together runs when they needed it most in order to get out of there with a win. Steph was the only Warrior who was really excellent throughout the entirety of the game. KD had his moments, while Draymond and Klay weren’t great in the first half, but made significant contributions down the stretch.
All in all, there isn’t much to take away from this game. They turned the ball over 17 times, which would normally result in a loss, but they managed to force 16 turnovers from the Nets. The Warriors improved to 10-0 on the season when JaVale McGee is the starting center, so that’s nice. Really though, this game was pretty exhausting from start to finish. It was a game full of runs, and the Warriors managed to keep their goal of “running the table” in the second half alive with a win.
The Warriors play next on Thursday, March 8, at home against the San Antonio Spurs, at 7:30 p.m.