On December 28, the Golden State Warriors came to work at Chase Center in San Francisco as winners of four straight games. Their hot streak - which featured a Christmas day beatdown of the rival Houston Rockets - was surprising, and had the team playing quality basketball for the first time all season.
They hosted the Dallas Mavericks, and had visions of pushing another quality team into the loss column.
Dallas missed the memo. They torched the Warriors defense, which had been shockingly stout in the week prior. Luka Doncic danced all over the Dubs, amassing 31 points, 12 rebounds, and 15 assists. D’Angelo Russell suffered a scary injury and was nearly carted off the court. And the Mavs won 141-121.
Fast forward a few weeks, and the Warriors have yet to restart their winning streak. That loss was the beginning of what is now an eight-game skid. Russell missed six of those games.
Now they get another crack at Dallas. The Mavericks return to San Francisco tonight, at 7:30 p.m. PT on NBC Sports Bay Area. Doncic will try dancing on the Chase Center hardwood again, though his All-Star running mate Kristaps Porzingis is listed as questionable.
Russell returned from his injury on Sunday, posting 34 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists, while not looking rusty at all. If the Warriors want to get to double digits in the win column, they’ll need their young All-Star at his best.
If nothing else, watching Russell and Doncic go at one another should be fun.
Enjoy the game, everyone. Let’s Go Dubs!