Reactions: Lakers 118, Warriors 116
|David Lee, PF 43 MIN | 8-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 19 PTS | -6
Lee was quite the presence offensively, especially in the second half when defended by Antawn Jamison. But sadly, his defense cost the Dubs tonight. He took poor angles against Bryant in the pick-and-roll and also allowed Pau Gasol to have his way against him.
|Harrison Barnes, SF 29 MIN | 1-6 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | 0
Barnes contributed on the boards and defended Kobe Bryant on a few possessions and held his own. Mind you, he contributed next to nothing offensively.
|Festus Ezeli, C 16 MIN | 2-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | +8
Ezeli contributed on the boards and gave the team a semi-physical presence in the paint. But he also fouled out in a mere 16 minutes of playing time and wasn’t enough of a deterrent at the basket.
|Stephen Curry, PG 44 MIN | 17-31 FG | 4-4 FT | 6 REB | 9 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 47 PTS | +3
Stephen Curry was simply sensational in this one. He rained jumpers from all over the place and when the Lakers keyed in on him, he repeatedly fed his open teammates. The Dubs lost, but it wasn’t because of Curry.
|Klay Thompson, SG 43 MIN | 10-24 FG | 3-4 FT | 2 REB | 7 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 25 PTS | +3
Klay played under control tonight for the most part and took some really good shots. The 1-2 pick-and-roll between he and Curry resulted in a favorable matchup with Steve Blake and he burned him early and often. Also, his defense on Kobe Bryant was quite impressive.
In terms of scheme, Jackson did a lot of interesting things in this one to matchup with the Lakers. He even stole one of the Laker plays and ran it for Klay Thompson down the stretch and the guard rewarded his play calling by nailing a killer 3-pointer. But ultimately, Jackson deserves some criticism for failing to manufacture plays to free up Curry in the fourth quarter.
Three Things We Saw
- Stephen Curry should have had north of 50 points in this contest. By the end of the third quarter, he was comfortably sitting on 39 points with his hands looking like a flamethrower. In addition, he was getting whatever shot he wanted. The Lakers decided to double-team him in the pick-and-roll and he willingly gave the ball up to open teammates. But only getting four shots within the final period with one of those being a backcourt heave is simply unacceptable.
- Fouls, fouls, fouls and more fouls. The Lakers benefitted from a few favorable calls but that’s not what cost the Warriors the game. Golden State players repeatedly committed silly fouls off the ball (rebounding, loose ball, post position, etc..) and gave the Lakers a chance to parade at the stripe and put up 50 freebies. Count’em, 50!
- Not Warriors related but still worth mentioning: with about three minutes left in the game, Kobe Bryant exited the contest due to a foot injury. For player that has consistently displayed an incredibly high pain threshold as well as tons of toughness, his departure certainly signals something serious with his foot. The league is better with Kobe on the floor, let’s hope he bounces back.