Moral victories are fine in their place. You’re outnumbered, outgunned, and out-talented yet, you remain in your opponent’s chest. You’re fighting for every possession. For every loose ball and every charge. You as a team are doing the most with the least and the actual victory is there for the taking. You almost made key baskets down the stretch, and almost won.
But as R&B singer Brandy used to sing, “Almost doesn’t count.”
Almost will never count. Ever.
The Golden State Warriors, once again snatched an “L” from the mouth of victory as they dropped a tough one to the Orlando Magic 100-96. Glenn Robinson III led the way in scoring with 19 points and Willie Cauley-Stein chipped in with a double double of 11 points and 12 rebounds.
A Comeback Deferred
The Warriors were down as many as 12. They made a run to tie the game at 51 all at the half. What brought the Dubs back was making the necessary adjustments on defense. Forcing turnovers and scoring in transition. They also crashed the boards defensively, racking up 31 boards. However, the Warriors couldn’t consistently run the Magic off the three point line. Granted, they shot 11 of 33 from the field (33%) but a few of those threes down the stretch, the Warriors didn’t have an answer for.
Failure to Execute
The Warriors were mostly solid on defense. They hustled for boards, and made Orlando pay at the free throw line. However they could not score down the stretch. An Alec Burks go-ahead free throw tied the game at 86 with four minutes remaining, and a Robinson three gave the Warriors the lead a minute later. The Magic’s Markelle Fultz scored on back to back possessions for the lead. What followed was missed shots from Draymond Green, Eric Paschall, And Burks. Most of the shots missed were layups. Until a Burks’ three brought the game within a point, the Warriors shot 0-for-4 in the game’s closing minutes.
Can’t Get Over the Hump.
The Warriors at 4-17 have the worst record in the league. However there is an ounce of context within this record regardless of the injuries. This team fought and was competitive in nine of those 17 losses. They are 1-8 in those games, and had various opportunities to win these nine games, which would have had them at 13-17. But due to mental mistakes from a young group of guys on both ends of the floor, the losses keep piling up. Unfortunately, there’s no column for moral wins.