Recap #19: Golden State Warriors 93, Sacramento Kings 90 - A win, but not a smart win

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Well, someone's got to win.

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Blog Buddy: Sactown Royalty

What happens when two of the worst teams in the league square off? Well, someone's got to win. Even if it's not smart.

JUMP for the 19th recap of this lockout-shortened season!

Not Smart

  • My man Fantasy Junkie used to have this saying that the Warriors neither win the games they're supposed to nor lose the games they're supposed to. Let's be honest. The Warriors are NOT making the playoffs this season. The absolute worst thing they can do is wind up with a lottery pick in the 8-14 range and lose the pick thanks to an absolutely idiotic trade that Chris Mullin made for some laptop-thief back in 2008 in the post-Baron Davis departure panic. Wins like this against bad teams only help the Warriors lose their draft pick in what is supposed to be a loaded draft class.
  • Monta Ellis getting picked by DeMarcus Cousins near half court, leading to a nice layup for Cousins.
  • 21 assists to 18 turnovers for the Kings? There's talent in Sa-crap-mento with Cousins, JT, and Tyreke, but the hoops IQ is definitely lacking on that roster. They'd be wise to grab a few playoff-tested vets to provide some tutelage for these guys, but I doubt that'll ever happen. Again they're not very smart.
  • These are two of the worst coached teams in the league. Did it ever occur to Coach Mark Jackson to attack the Kings Charmin soft interior during the 1st 3 quarters of this game? How does Coach Keith Smart not know how to exploit his former team's glaring flaws and get an easy win?
  • 6 for 24 shooting from Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry? That's awful.
  • 5 points, 5 fouls, and 3 rebounds = a comeback game from your $9 million starting center and "franchise cornerstone worth destroying WE BELIEVE to build around"? Give me a break. Even the incomparably incompetent Chris Cohan would've used the amnesty-get-out-of-jail card on Andris Biedrins. Feeding Biedrins at the beginning of the game was cute the first few times Coach Smart tried to do it last season, but it's insulting to his teammates who actually have offensive game and actually work hard to improve their offensive skills. It's just silly.

Well it was a win after all...

I'd rate Coach Jackson as a bottom-tier NBA coach, one who was curiously hired by an ownership that dumped his predecessor Coach Smart partly with the logic that he wasn't experienced enough. But, I give Coach Jackson all the credit in the world for sticking with his bench down the stretch. Monta Ellis, Stephen Curry, and Andris Biedrins were all pretty terrible tonight. Actually let's be fair- Curry and Ellis did have 12 assists to only 1 turnover and Biedrins did hustle on defense. Still they did not play winning basketball tonight. Coach Smart recognized that and stuck to his guns- his bench.

Here's why the Warriors won tonight:

  • David Lee is quietly having a very nice season. Going into tonight's game Lee was averaging nearly 19-10. He's earning his money in my book. Lee's 7 for 11 from the field were essential for this W.
  • He's not perfect, but Nate Robinson is a fantastic option off the bench. Nellie sure could've used NateRob off the bench back when the Warriors were playing games that mattered for more than just draft position. How can you not love the heart? The Warriors don't win tonight if Nate doesn't sub in and lead the bench crew down the stretch.
  • Dominic McGuire played 13 minutes of scrappy, tough, winning basketball.
  • Brandon Rush's 3 point shooting this season has been phenomenal and he continued that NBA-Jam-he's-on-fire-like shooting tonight with 4 of 5 from downtown. I'll take 20 points (6-10 FG, 4-5 3pt, 4-4 FT) and 6 boards in 25 minutes any day of the week. Just a thought- what if the Warriors started Curry and Rush in the backcourt and brought Monta off the bench? Curry wouldn't have to defer to anyone and could have the ball in his hands more (side note: he looked visibly frustrated with Monta's iso 1 on 5 attempts tonight). Monta would obviously be unstoppable against opposing second units.
  • Please excuse the hyperbole, but was that Dikembe Mutombo down in the paint for the Warriors in the 4th quarter? Ekpe Udoh was a force on D down the stretch. The Warriors don't win tonight without Udoh's defense. They probably win a lot more with Greg Monroe, but hey that's another story for another time...

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Tonight's award goes to the Warriors'

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(pic via www.yardenvy.com)

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