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While seemingly everything else goes wrong, Golden State has found their most unheralded star

NBA: Golden State Warriors at Phoenix Suns Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

That’s three consecutive 20 point games for Quinn Cook, 25 against the Sacramento Kings, 28 against the Suns, and now 20 against the Spurs. While it’s unlikely he continues to get 40 minutes a night, Cook’s impact is impossible to deny.

After Draymond Green went down early after catching a knee to the midsection, it quickly became apparent that this was Cook’s team tonight. Quick off the dribble, with good handles and a dangerous (if streaky) outside shot, Cook has smoothly fit into a role that’s going to hard to say goodbye to anytime soon.

“We relied heavily on him,” said a somber Steve Kerr after the game

With nothing but pride on the line for the Golden State Warriors against a San Antonio Spurs team fighting for playoff positioning, it was actually pretty miraculous that they were even within spitting distance in the tail end of the fourth quarter. In the end, the Spurs team — even without Kawhi Leonard — proved to be too much for a Warriors team playing without 80% of their starting lineup.

Even without his outside shot falling (2-for-8 from long distance on the night), Cook managed to lead the team in scoring. Sure, some credit is certainly due to the unpleasant synergy that occurred between the stout Spurs defense and the Warriors relatively punchless bench, but regardless of extenuating circumstances it’s still an impressive feat for a guy who spent most of his season in Santa Cruz playing in the G-League.

The games against the Suns and Kings were blemished by the easy competition, but seeing Cook continue to be a factor against a top 10 defense like the Spurs was easily the most impressive outing of this little three game run he’s on.

No use denying it: We need Quinn Cook

If you can remember that far back, Linsanity was just a 26-game run. While Cook’s run is nowhere near the scale of impact, it’s not that much of a stretch to start drawing parallels here.

The Warriors need the momentum, they need the dynamic force of Cook’s game. For a team that’s dragging itself into the postseason (after sorta dragging through the regular season too, if we’re being honest about it), an X-factor like Quinn Cook may be just what the doctor ordered.

Owner Joe Lacob has talked a big game about paying for what matters since he got here, and the team is now finally in a position where it is time to prove how seriously he wants to stand behind those promises made. In fact, it was exactly six years ago that Lacob got soundly booed while talking about respect in Oracle.

In those six years that stand between that moment and this one, Lacob has gone through the journey of success and failure just like all the rest of us. With last night’s performance, Quinn Cook has likely played his way into the Warriors offseason plans.

Just listen to his post game interview. This is the kind of guy you want to keep.

Warriors Wonder: Honorable mention

I would be remiss if I didn’t include some mention of Kevon Looney’s game last night as well. Fitting that it came against the Spurs, because Looney seems like exactly the sort of player that the Spurs organization would covet.

After a rocky early start, Looney’s career arch seems to have shifted from marginal NBA talent, to “dude who could play on basically any team nowadays.” Versatile, long-limbed, and with a nose for the ball, Looney has worked his way into the rotation by being able to defend the pick and roll as well as any of our bigs (outside of Draymond Green).

Last night, he was everywhere: 12 points (on 6/7 shooting), with eight rebounds, three steals, and a block. While other players seem to wilt under the bright lights (looking at you Nick Young, with your bad defense and 10 points in 40 minutes last night) Looney always seems to contribute with or without shot attempts or big minutes.


Which Warrior should get waived to get Cook on the playoff roster?

This poll is closed

  • 36%
    (1026 votes)
  • 38%
    (1083 votes)
  • 10%
    (307 votes)
  • 4%
    (136 votes)
  • 5%
    another Warrior
    (162 votes)
  • 4%
    nobody, Quinn misses the playoffs
    (130 votes)
2844 votes total Vote Now

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