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Warriors Take Game 1 In Controversial Fashion

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What a game. To some up this game. Manu Ginobili summed it bump best

“Kawhi went down and we didn’t have time to react to his absence.”

Because the Warriors jumped at the chance to capitalize on the Spurs weakness. Kawhi Leonard sprained his ankle on back to back possession in the 3rd quarter stepping on David Lee’s foot and landing on Pachulia’s foot on a jump shot. When asked about the Pachulia foul, Leonard simply didn’t think it was a dirty play just good contest by Pachulia but that cause the Warriors to pounce on their opponent. Awaiting their chance to catch their prey slipping.

This first quarter started off hot for the Spurs. They held the Warriors to 14 in the first quarter and 42 for the half (their lowest scoring half of the playoffs) but this was their 3rd largest comeback in playoff history. The second quarter started the same way but the Warriors showed a little life.

A lot of people can say that the Warriors only won because of Kawhi’s injury and that’s fair, but the Warriors also never sleep on 3rd quarter comebacks. You saw it in Portland, you saw it in Utah and you saw it basically this entire season. Where the Warriors come out stagnant and confused, who to give the ball to? Who’s gonna score?

Steph Curry put all that to rest. He scored 14 of the Warriors 42 first-half points and scored 40  for the game (7-of-16 from 3). While everybody was stuck trying to find a rhythm; Stephen Curry was trying to hold the scoring load until everyone decided they wanted to win. Durant scored 32 for the game but didn’t make his first three until the 4th quarter and only 2-8 for the game from 3.

Klay Thompson only scored six and missed the chance to put the dagger in the game with a wide open wing three. Thompson has still yet to find a rhythm in any game of the playoffs but puts his mark on close out games every series.

Andre Iguodala was held out of the 2nd half with soreness in his knee that left (also could miss the 2nd game of this series). Iguodala is a pivotal part of what the Warriors do defensively and creating plays as an alternate ball handler for the 2nd unit.

Livingston and Pachulia playing big minutes. Which actually wasn’t a bad idea. Lamarcus Aldridge is a task for any opponent and for Pachulia to shut him down on three straight possession set a great tone for the Warriors in the third.

That great 3rd quarter from Stephen Curry’s offense and defense fired up the rest of the team to lead to a great 4th quarter by Durant to ice this game and the dagger from Stephen Curry on the floater close down the game; and it still wasn’t over as the Spurs would opt for a steal and cut it down to 2 on a free throw by Patty Mills but failed to get the ball back for a tip up to tie the game.

The Warriors rallied and all of the praise was given to Oracle for keeping them ten toes down and ready for every play. Mike Brown said “the crowd gave us energy on every spurt. Even the mediocre plays they were excited about.”

The Spurs could learn a lot from the game and minus the Leonard injury. The Spurs aren’t and haven’t been an elite scoring team but their defense makes their offense; unless Leonard is on the floor. San Antonio needs to establish a more balanced scoring attack if they want to be any threat to the Warriors, because letting Stephen Curry score 40 and combine for 72 with Kevin Durant is a death threat and just asking to lose.

Golden State may have squeaked out this win but the Spurs should have done a better job closing out a 20 point game with one-half left to play.

About Jhalil Matthews

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1 Comment

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