Golden State Warriors vs. New Orleans Pelicans - Report

Joshua Biers

Golden State Warriors v New Orleans Pelicans

The Golden State Warriors escaped the New Orleans Pelicans with one of the biggest wins of the season thanks to a missed three-pointer in the final seconds by Eric Gordon. I swear I saw the shot hit every part of the rim, go halfway down, and then somehow, magically bounce out. Even Eric Gordon was surprised when he missed the shot, expressing a look of shock which transitioned into defeat. The Warriors were dangerously close to extending their losing streak to four games. Starting off this difficult road trip with a heart-breaking loss and increasing a losing streak would have put the morale of this team at a season low. Andrew Bogut did not suit up for the Warriors due to his one game suspension by league offices for his altercation with Mo Williams in Sunday’s loss to the Portland Trailblazers. Andre Iguodala was also out due to his hamstring injury.

The game started out as most Warriors games do. The Warriors play excellent defense coupled with good ball movement on the offensive end and they found themselves with a 15-point lead in the second quarter. The Pelicans cut the lead to eight by half and continued rolling to start the second half. The Warriors went through another scoring drought like they did against Portland and found themselves down three with 3 minutes to go in the third quarter. The game would stay close with the lead changing frequently until the Warriors put on a little run and were up four with 2:30 left. One of the Warriors “Achilles heels” this year has been their inability to close out quarters and that’s exactly what happened. They let the Pellies back into the game and allowed them a last second shot to win the game.

Draymond Green would get the game ball from me after his stellar performance for the Warriors off the bench. Not only did Draymond do an excellent job guarding Ryan Anderson, but he created turnovers and easy baskets for the Warriors. He did a little bit of everything, providing 3 steals, 3 blocks, 3 assists, 2 rebounds and 7 points. He sparked the Warriors 4th quarter run, which led to their six- point lead. I have to talk about Jermaine O’Neal as well. I think Jermaine may have been wearing his Pacers jersey underneath because he was going old school Jermaine on everyone. He played a total of 26 minutes on his injured groin and finished with 18 point and 8 rebounds. Forget David Lee, let’s play Bogut and Jermaine together. I’m just kidding, but it was nice to see him play so well. Steph had a poor shooting night but was an assist and a couple of boards away from a triple double. Klay had the game-high 22 points and also recorded 8 assists.

Matt’s Home Improvements

It doesn’t make a lot of sense to write about all of the issues with an injured team when the issues could be solved by a person returning, so I just have one concern after this game. Once again the Warriors best line-up consisted of David Lee not being on the floor. When the Warriors played small ball (Steph, Klay, Barnes, Draymond, Speights/Jermaine) they were the most efficient on both ends of the floor. Mark Jackson used a switch everything defensive mentality (something that the Heat use) and the Pelicans had a very hard time scoring. Even Steph had a few good possessions matched-up on the much bigger Tyreke Evans. On the offensive side there were a lot more openings which led to drive and kicks for open corner three as well as lay-ups. I do not know how you solve the David Lee problem aside from not playing him. His numbers do not reflect how poorly he truly plays. He gets blocked frequently, which leads to transition baskets. He throws up wild shots looking for fouls which don’t count as turnovers but really are. He then CANNOT guard anybody on the defensive end. I think Mark Jackson is aware of this, but doesn’t know how to put his leader and highest paid player on the bench in crunch time. As the year goes on I will keep track of how often the Warriors play this small ball line-up and how often it succeeds or doesn’t.

The Warriors play the Dallas Mavericks tonight, which should be a very good game. If the Warriors can pull this one out tonight to get their tenth win of the season it will put this team back on track to be a top-four seed in the West.

Want to see some old school O’Neal highlights? Look no further:


Edited by Staff Editor


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