I always try to gauge around halftime whether to start writing a recap from a myopic or grand scheme point of view. Since the game was a bit of a wreck and I actually fell asleep in the second quarter on the rewatch and had to triple re-watch the game, I'm going to bombard you all with more words than necessary about a boring Sunday afternoon game against the cellar dweller Boston Celtics.
In the vacuum of a single game, the Celtics gave the blueprint of how to frustrate and potentially beat the Golden State Warriors. They own a lockdown point guard defender in Avery Bradley that blew up all Draymond Green and Andrew Bogut screens and tussled with Stephen Curry into a 6-16 shooting night. Jared Sullinger, on the other side, moved around Green with his size and had Bogut jumping all over the place to run him of the three-point line. It ended up as a 26 point night on just 17 shots for the Ohio State product. On defense, the Celtics just didn't have the personnel to combat the likes of Klay Thompson, David Lee and the rest of the supporting cast. But they at least found some flaws in what has been an invincible team this season.
On the broader stroke of this season, this victory signified the first time the Warriors didn't blow someone out since the Oklahoma City Thunder game when Kevin Durant rolled his ankle and missed the second half. That level of dominance had to come to an end sometime and it fittingly came on a weird start time on Sunday - a tough time to play because Saturday night. You could say that the Warriors need these types of wins to truly gain toughness as a championship toughness. They need some type of adversity, right? Something to keep them on their toes? Curry even said that they shouldn't settle into a groove where they become bored with winning. It's as open as Curry will get from a non- Xs and Os perspective in a public setting. But this game doesn't seem like it's something sustainable. At least not when Draymond Green is on the team. Effort will never be the problem.
1. Draymond Green has added a three-point shot, defensive quickness, and the loss of weight in conditioning to become the excellent player he is. Right now, he's a special defensive player that can also knock down threes with the interior passing ability of a David Lee. To take another leap, I don't think he needs to work on a turnaround game but an in-between push shot. Since he runs so many pick-and-rolls and pick-and-pops with Curry, he's going to get open shots from the 5-8 feet range. It's much easier to shoot a push shot the way Lee does than a full motion jumper. If Green can develop that, it could make the defense respect his scoring that much more.
2. Klay Thompson is playing on a different level right now. I probably need to go with a full breakdown soon but everything is rolling. There's a certain type of confidence when a player knows he can score on anyone in the world. Thompson can score on anyone. His catch-and-shoot prowess is paralyzing defenders and leading to easy forays to the basket. His finishing is so much smoother than in years past. He might not have noticeable gain in muscle mass but there's no way he didn't get stronger in order to finish and keep balance throughout hits the way he does now.
3. Bogut is as healthy as he could possibly look and it shows. He's flipping in hook shots, bringing the ball up on offense, dropping backdoor dimes, and challenging and taking chargers without fear of his body getting hurt. This is Peak Andrew Bogut and he transforms the Warriors on both offense and defense.
4. On a broadcasting notes, Fitz loves to keep track of every David Lee as he's accruing them and it's getting a little weird. After a rebound, he goes out of his way to say it's Lee's sixth. And he takes special delight in screaming that certain pas was Lee's seventh assist. He does it for some of the other players but seems to take special glee to do it for Lee. More funny than harmful, I guess.
The Golden State Warriors stay home to face the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday at 7:30 PST.