The Golden State Warriors got back on the winning side of the standings on Saturday, defeating the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-82 in their largest win of the season. Coming off their first loss, the Warriors put together their best performance of the year against the young Thunder.
After struggling with turnovers in their past two games, the Warriors put on a beautiful passing display. Golden State turned the ball over 22 times in Thursday’s overtime loss to the Grizzlies. They recorded 15 turnovers and 30 assists on Saturday, but nearly half of their turnovers occurred in garbage time.
The Warriors strong passing effort was undermined by inconsistent shooting early. Elite Thunder defender Luguentz Dort was all over Stephen Curry and forced the offense away from the Dubs best player. In fact, only one Warrior scored more than three points in the first quarter:
Draymond Green was 5-for-6 with 11 points in the first quarter. Yet even with the Dubs offense relying on Green, they led 28-20 heading into the second. Green finished with 14 points, 11 rebounds, 8 assists, and just 2 turnovers in 25 minutes of action.
With Damion Lee out with a shoulder injury, the Warriors were missing their most consistent bench-scorer of the season. However, Golden State is far more talented up-and-down the roster than OKC and that showed all game.
After a solid start to the second quarter, though, the second unit's offense stalled. It seemed for a second like the Warriors could once again be letting their opponent keep the game close. However, while Jordan Poole’s shot was once again not falling early, he was more aggressive driving to the hoop and knocked in a floater when the Thunder closed the lead to 10.
Then, with the shot clock winding down two possessions later, Poole finally broke his cold stretch from three.
Leading 55-44 coming out of the half, the Warriors went right for the jugular. Despite their 4-1 record, Golden State has let multiple opponents stay in games for longer than they’d like. Curry made a point of ensuring that would not happen on Saturday and immediately found his stroke in the third quarter.
Curry dropped in back-to-back threes to start the second half and helped the Dubs build a 20-point lead with a 15-point quarter. The rest of the Warriors stepped up from deep as well. Andrew Wiggins capitalized on multiple catch-and-shoot threes, finishing 4-for-5 from behind the arc. Otto Porter Jr. had his best game of the regular season, knocking in a pair of threes and finishing with 10 points off the bench.
Leading 82-58 at the end of the third quarter, Poole led the second unit on a 14-8 run to start the fourth, and Warriors head coach Steve Kerr got to keep Curry and Green on the bench for the final quarter for the first time of the year.
With the stars resting up, rookie Jonathan Kuminga made his NBA debut and Moody and Chris Chiozza both saw their most extended run of the season. None of the youngsters stood out in garbage time, although Kuminga scored his first official NBA points, but the Warriors hope to have plenty more opportunities to give their developing youngster more playing time late in blowout victories all season.
Now 5-1, the Warriors will look to keep their winning ways going when they host the Charlotte Hornets at Chase Center on Wednesday.
You can watch our postgame Twitch stream below, and make sure to follow and turn notifications on to tune
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