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Warriors Weekly: Another Winless Week

The Golden State Warriors are amidst an eight game losing streak, their longest of the season. They, along with only the Atlanta Hawks, are yet to achieve ten wins this season. Putting together full 48-minute performances have been tough for the shorthanded Dubs this year. This past week emphasized their inability to put forth a four-quarter effort. 

1/6/20- @ Sacramento, L 111-98

The week started with a road game in Sacramento against the Kings. The Kings haven’t been very good this year in their own right, sitting at just 15-25 on the season. Still, they had more than enough to get by the Warriors fairly easily.

Solid perimeter shooting is a must in today’s NBA. Poor shooting from three-point territory can doom even the best of teams on any given night. If you are a bad team and can’t make outside shots, just waive the white towel before tip-off. Golden State shot just 5-256 from three against the Kings, just 19%. On the flip side, Sacramento knocked down 50% of their long range buckets, going 15-30. Not having D’Angelo Russell really killed the Warriors spacing in this game as they struggled to get into any sort of flow offensively. 

Buddy Hield and De’Aaron Fox each scored 21 points along with 18 from former Warrior Harrison Barnes. Trevor Ariza also contributed 18 points off the bench. Glenn Robinson III led the Warriors with just 16 points. Rookie Eric Paschall also had 12 as the only other starter to finish in double digits. Damion Lee also had just eight points, breaking an eight-game streak of scoring ten points or more. Draymond Green also missed this game with a sprained ankle.

1/8/20- vs. Milwaukee, L 107-98

The Warriors returned home to host the top seed in the Eastern Conference, the Milwaukee Bucks. An expected national TV blowout actually ended up being a close game. As has been the theme all year though, the Warriors simply do not have enough scoring (or defense for that matter) to keep up with the better teams in crunch time. 

Golden State cut the deficit to five with just under two minutes to play off two Omari Spellman free throws. Six straight points for the Bucks put the game out of reach though as the Warriors were handed their sixth straight loss. 

The Warriors defense deserves some credit for their performance. They held Milwaukee to just 40% shooting, down over 7% from their season average. Giannis Antetokounmpo did enough though, scoring 30 points on a 10-21 shooting performance. Khris Middleton also had 21 points including a trio of three-pointers.

Draymond struggled to score in his first game back from injury. He did, however, have eight rebounds and eight assists to somewhat make up for his pedestrian five points. Alec Burks led all Warriors in scoring with 19 points off the bench. Rookie Alen Smailagic also had his first double-digit scoring night of the year with ten points off the bench.

1/10/20- @ Clippers, L 109-100

The Warriors only fourth quarter lead came against the Clippers on Friday night. In fact, the Warriors held a ten-point, 83-73 advantage going into the final frame. It disappeared in less than four minutes.

The Clippers more than doubled the Warriors in the fourth, outscoring the Dubs 36-17. Kawhi Leonard, who finished with 36 points on the night, scored ten in the quarter. Montrez Harrell also scored seven points in a 14-2 LA run to open up the quarter. The Warriors defense fell off hard in the final 12 minutes after forcing 17 Clipper turnovers in the first three quarters. LA had just two the rest of the way. 

Outside shooting did the Warriors in once again as they shot just 2-10 in the final quarter. Golden State shot just 20% from three in this game as well as a porous 38% overall. The Clippers were not great from outside either, shooting just 28% from three-point territory. They did shoot ten percent better than Golden State as a whole though with a 48% field goal percentage. 

Robinson III and Spellman led the way for the Warriors with 17 points each. Alec Burks had another double-digit night off the bench but was incredibly inefficient scoring 16 points on just 3-17 shooting.

1/12/20- @ Memphis, L 122-102

The week concluded on the road in Memphis against the Grizzlies. Similar to the Clippers game, the Warriors fell apart for an entire 12 minutes. This time, that came a quarter early.

The Grizzlies outscored the Warriors 35-17 in the third quarter to command an 18-point lead going into the fourth. Against this Warriors team, that’s your ballgame. Plain and simple. There were still some positives for Golden State though.

D’Angelo Russell returned after missing six games with a right shoulder contusion. Oh, what a difference he makes with this offense. He finished with 34 points on 12-24 shooting and 5-9 from deep. Rookie Jordan Poole also knocked down four triples en route to a 13-point night off the bench. 

Golden State had no answer all night for Jonas Valanciunas. Jonas scored a season-high 31 points on 13-17 from the floor. He also snagged 19 rebounds, nine of them offensive, as he logged his 17th double-double of the season. Second year man Jaren Jackson Jr. also had 21 points on the night. 

Russell commented on the losing streak after the game, per ESPN:

“It’s the adversity that we have to keep chipping away at,” Russell said about the losing streak. “It’s not easy to win in this league. Just have to look at film and see what we can do to get better.”

This marked the 14th game the Warriors have shot under 40% from the field this season. That did not happen to this team once last year. 

Looking Ahead

The Warriors have a three-game home stand this week. They’ll see the Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, and Orlando Magic every other day starting on Tuesday night. Stephen Curry is expected to be a part of the Warriors TV broadcast team Saturday night against the Magic.

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