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RECAP: Warriors 104, Magic 95: Don't Stop Believing!

OH YEA! That's what I'm talking about! Did you see this game? Now I'm not one to EVER boast after a win or ever talk trash to other people (if you know me), but tonight feels downright good. Shame on you the Orlando Magic for not knowing what just hit them. Just because we're 8th in the West can't you see that we practically have the same record? You should have known what's at stake for us tonight and realize if there's one team in the league that will come back being down 8 at the half ... it's the Warriors!

Coming off a road victory the night before, our beloved Warriors beat the Magic 104 to 95. Yellow shirts were peppered throughout the stadium cheering the Warriors on as our now famous slogan "We Believe" has spread throughout the country.

Let's see how we did this tonight ...


Yea it was this good! This is what we did to them tonight!

Many of you are probably still unaware of the Arnel Pineda movement sweeping the world. Arnel Pineda is a Filipino singer who was working for a cover band called Zoo and just recently became the lead singer of a famous US band called Journey. He reminded me of tonight’s victory. The story is quite amazing and it’s all based on achieving incredible heights. Not to get into too much detail of his life, but here’s a guy who came from absolutely nothing in the 3rd world country of the Philippines, sang for a cover band playing in clubs in the main city of Manila, and thanks to the internet and YouTube, Journey saw his cover songs and decided to contact him. The rest is history as they offered him a job as the new lead singer, touring the world.

The band stinks, but this guy sound exactly like Journey!

So how the heck does this correlate to the Warriors? Well, I’m starting to believe again. Winning 3 of the 4 on this East coast road trip, kept the Warriors within half a game of Dallas in 7th with Dallas and one game behind the Suns in 6th. More importantly, this gives the Warriors further separation from the Nuggets. This victory was even more impressive playing against one of the top teams in the league. Tonight’s recap is Journey’s song "Don’t Stop Believing" in a Warriors twist. (You’re going to have to imagine following my lyrics. Too bad I can’t sing for you guys)

(20 seconds)
Just a small town team, livin in an NBA world
We took the midnight train goin to Disney world
Against a city team, we were down in the third
They thought they had this game going their own way

The first half was bad. We were sluggish, not communicating, and shooting a dismal 33%. To top that off the Magic were shooting an incredible 56% and having their way with us. Howard and Lewis were combining for what seemed to be a good game for them as they spread the floor causing us to cramp up on offense. What surprised me was how we did not go to the hot hand of Monta Ellis. Scoring 12 in the first quarter, he only shot a couple times in the second quarter making me question why Baron never tried to set him up. However, the Warriors kept it close and ended the half down by only 8 points. I knew we had a chance. Shooting that poorly couldn’t last the whole game and it was up to Nellie to get our team going.

Our players in a hostile arena
With boos and bad ref calls
And our team never gave it up
Fighting on and on and on and on

After halftime it was all Baron Davis. 33 points, 9 rebounds, Baron had that fire in his eyes as he ran circles around the Magic guards and continually pushed towards the basket. Bob Fitzgerald had the best line of the night during the third quarter when he said

"Down by 8, up by 9 heading into the 4th."

Simple, elegant, and what the Warriors are all about.

(1:27 seconds)
Magic stinking, up and down the court
Warriors searching in the night
Hitting threes, and driving to the basket
Baron, flying in the night

Jackson was another key contributor after the half. Not doing anything the first half, he was able to produce key defensive stops and pushing fast break points in the third and fourth. Pietrus also had a wonderful defensive game assisting on 3 fast breaks with 3 steals, and seemed like a monster on the boards, grabbing 11 which made up for his poor shooting on offense.

(2:07 seconds)
Working hard is Captain Jack
Always trying to make a thrill
Pietrus passing to the streaking Monta,
Just one more dunk
Some will win, some will lose
But Warriors always choose
to push you to the end
Fighting on and on and on and on

However, my key to tonight’s victory was Andris Biedrins’ defense on Dwight Howard. Hands down! This was an incredible performance by Biens you won’t see on any stat line. Biens was all over Howard frustrating the Eastern Conference All Star by not allowing him to find ground and using his speed to front him. He also made it incredibly difficult for the Magic guards to pass down the middle, forcing Dwight to lose focus and control of the game. Andris had 4 points, 2 rebounds and 3 steals but came away as my MVP. This coming off surgery. Nice!

(2:38 seconds)
Magic waiting
Hoping and praying that the
Warriors will give a break
In the night
Nellie, genius
finding a way to win
victory, somehow in the night

As I always say in all my recaps, defense won the game. Even though we are not known for our defense, you can easily see the Warriors put the clamps down on the Magic after halftime. 14 steals in the game versus 3 from the Magic, allowed us to push fast break points which is our best type of game. Another reason for our win, we had 9 turnovers to the Magic’s 20. Controlling the ball and forcing other teams to make mistakes will help us secure a seat in the playoffs.

(3:25 seconds)
Don't stop believin'
Oh the Warriors are the best
We have the best fans
Don't stop believin'
Hold on to the feeling
Playoffs, here we come!

Don't stop believin'
We’re going to the top
We have the best fans
Don't stop

I know you all want Baron. But honestly I have to give it to Andris Biedrins. He only played 19 minutes and I know without Baron we would have lost, but Biens coming off surgery was able to close out Dwight tonight. Had Dwight been free to play his usual game we would have lost. This was a great team effort.

Side Note: AJC3317 is the winner of tonight contest guessing our Warriors would pull down 44 rebounds for the game. Great job! You are now our leading YaoButta’s challenge for a prize at the end of the year.

Photos courtesy of (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

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