Facing the T-Wolves (part 2)

Game # 29: GSW (16-12) vs. Minnesota (4-22)
GSW: (Home) 7-5     Minnesota (Road) 1-12
Tip off 7:30 pm PST     Venue - Oracle Arena

 Standing:  Golden State Warriors: 3rd Pacific/7th West
                  Minnesota T-Wolves: 5th No. West/ 15 West

Game prediction: Golden State Warriors (16-12) - 80.6 % - + 9.8
                             Minnesota T-Wolves: (2-22) - 19.3 %
                             (Source: Team Ranking)

Comparative stats (raw numbers)

Golden State Warriors (28 games)                         Minnesota T-Wolves (26 games)
PPG: 108.2 (2nd) - 3.030 pts made                        93.6 (26th) - 2,433 pts made
FG%: 45.1 (15th) - 1,125/2,498                             43.9 (24th) - 951/2,164
3pt %: 34.9 (17th) - 261/747                                  34.4 (19th) - 148/430
FT%: 73.6 (21st) - 519/705                                    72.7 (23rd) - 583/527
RPG: 12.6 (6th) - 1,198 (O:353/D:845)                  12.4 (9th) - 1,087 (O:322/D:765)
TOPG: 13.78                                                          16.26
Assist/TO - 1.65                                                     1.21
Pts in the paint: 46.0 (1,287)                                   41.0 (1,068)

PPG: 106.4 (30th) - 2,978 pts allowed                  102.0 (24th) - 2,653 pts allowed
FG%: 46.0 (22nd) - 1,091/2,371                            46.3 (26th) - 949/2,050
3pt %: 36.2 (19th) - 184/508                                 35.5 (15th) - 175/494
FT%: 73.6 (6th) - 612/832                                     78.5 (30th) - 580/739
RPG: 30.2 (18th) - 1,344 (O:380/D:964)               29.4 (23rd) - 1,072 (O:282/D:790)
TOPG:13.78                                                          13.76
Pts In paint: 42.1 (1,180)                                       38.0 (987)
Steals :8.96 pg                                                      7.27 pg

After their first game with the T-Wolves last 12/19; "Everybody had something to say," Harrington said. "For us to be the team we want to be, we can't lose these games. No disrespect for them, but they are the worst team in the league. We feel that we're one of the top 10 teams in the league." This is the sentiment in the locker room amongst the Warriors when the T-Wolves were ahead 62-54 in the first half. True enough, the Warriors tighten their defenses and started to hit on offense for a 20 pts advantage in the 3rd Q; 37-17and finally won their 8th road game 111-98.

But that win just proved to them that they can beat anybody if they play that 2nd half intensity. At the same time it sends a wrong signal. Even with a slow start, they believed they can win games. They've done it before in Philly, in Sacto, now in Minny and with the Heat and even with the Lakers at Oracle. But the Don would not buy that; "We're going to get beat one of these nights if we start relying on that, if we don't take of business and play four quarters. Sometimes you can get away with that. But not often. We have gotten away with that at least twice this year so far."

True enough; the words of Nellie became prophetic when they lost to the slumping Nets the following game. Nelson said before the game "We're definitely going to get kicked in the teeth if we keep doing that," the Warriors' coach had said before the game about his team's brutal starts. "We got away with it three times. It hasn't cost us, but it will." And it did cost them a win. What is supposed to be a meaningful win, a win at the Izod Arena where the Dubs has yet to win since February 28, 1997. After that loss, Nellie said in exasperation ; "We continue to dig ourselves into a hole in the first quarter, then try to deal ourselves out of it," Nelson said. "So now we got a loss. It's what the coach said would happen, huh?"

Stat shows that more than 50% of teams winning the 1st Q win the game. The Warriors learned their lesson after that loss in New Jersey. Instead of a slow start, they drew the first blood from the Cavs by hitting 13 0f 17 shots and going 5 for 6 on treys to outscore the Cavs 38-22 in the 1st Q. It was the first time in 10 games that the Warriors led after 12 minutes and also near perfect on the line  88.0% (22-25). Baron - 7/7; Jackson - 7/7; Ellis - 5/5; Big Al  2/4 and Biedrins 1/2. After winning 12 games away from home last season, the Road Warriors brought home their 9th scalp a feat that was done after 32 years; since the 1973-74 season.

Where in the first game, the Warriors are +5.9, now the Warriors are + 9.8 favorite from If the Warriors continue a fast start that they did against the Cavs, T-Wolves will  have no chance of winning especially if the Warriors play focused on both end of the court for 48 minutes. Warriors by 12.

Go Dubs!

This FanPost is a submission from a member of the mighty Golden State of Mind community. While we're all here to throw up that W, these words do not necessarily reflect the views of the GSoM Crew. Still, chances are the preceding post is Unstoppable Baby!