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Warriors Lose in a Heartbreaker to Thunder

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Dubs blew a 15-point lead. Thunder go on 25-5 run

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Golden State Warriors Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

On any other recap, it is customary to post pictures of on court action. However this picture of a disapproving Condoleezza Rice sitting courtside during the game is too fitting to resist. The picture is a perfect summary of a game turned meltdown.

Of all of the losses the Golden State Warriors have endured this season, this one must be the one that hurts the most. It has to be the one that will haunt them for a long time during this already trying season. Why? Because there is no more painful defeat than self-defeat. Here’s how the Warriors beat themselves, as they gave the game away to the Oklahoma City Thunder 100-97.

Mental mistakes

The Thunder scored the final 13 points of the game in the midst of a 25-5 run. On offense, instead of sticking to the dribble hand-offs and screens that built the 15-point lead, the Warriors diverted from it and stopped moving the ball. They also jacked up ill-advised shots from the perimeter and missed the shots that they had no business missing. In addition to poor shot selection and a failure to score the easier buckets, the Warriors had an array of empty possessions that included turnovers and bouts of indecisiveness during the fourth quarter.

Defensively, the Warriors were solid for most of the game. The rotations were effective. Their traps more often than not forced turnovers. But that too unraveled when the defense gave up backdoor lobs, became lax in guarding the perimeter, and undisciplined with fouls.

Granted, the “baby Dubs” lacked the vets necessary to work in conjunction with the youth of the squad and the Thunder are a team that is deep in experience. However, there’s no excuse for the Warriors to blow a lead and a game like this regardless of the experience level of this team.

Robinson’s Career Night / Bowman Continues to Impress

Glenn Robinson III led all scorers with 25 points on 9-of-14 from the field and including 3-of-4 from three. A night like this is what the Warriors and Robinson himself have envisioned when the journeyman wing signed over the summer.

Ky Bowman chipped in with 24 points on 9-of-17 shooting and 2-of-3 from deep. He also excelled defensively, with three steals and a block. He continues to make a strong case for having his two-way converted into a guaranteed deal.

If these two continue to perform like they did tonight on a consistent basis, there will be some tough decisions to make within a couple of months.