The Golden State Warriors were on the back end of a road back-to-back on Friday night, sans their top three players and two key bench players. But it turns out that Strength in Numbers is not just a feel-good phrase to make the role players feel appreciated around Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson.
It’s also a successful mantra for when the team is missing those three (and Andre Iguodala and Otto Porter Jr.). And the Warriors used it to sneak past a much healthier, albeit talent-deficient Detroit Pistons team.
But the Dubs needed every bit of magic, and every last dose of strength from those numbers to emerge victorious, ultimately winning 105-102.
They looked to be on cruise control early, jumping out to a 17-4 lead before letting the Pistons close the gap. A dominant third quarter gave Golden State a 16-point lead heading into the fourth quarter, but their cruise control button malfunctioned, and Detroit chipped away at the lead, getting closer and closer, and finally bringing the game down to the final seconds.
Clinging to a three-point lead, the Warriors allowed Jerami Grant to get a three-point shot off in the waning moments, then gave up an offensive rebound. The Pistons got a second look from distance, and Frank Jackson’s triple from straightaway went halfway down before miraculously popping out. Their second offensive rebound came too late, and another win was secured for Dub Nation.
Jordan Poole was magnificent, dropping in 32 points on 13-for-22 shooting, and emerging from his three-point slump with a 4-for-8 night from beyond the arc. Andrew Wiggins was a strong and steady offensive force, netting 27 points on 9-for-19 shooting. And Gary Payton II and Nemanja Bjelica joined their sharp-shooting teammates in double figures.
Golden State improved to 14-2 with the win. They’ll go for win No. 15 — which would match their 2019-20 total — on Sunday, when they host the Toronto Raptors.
Make sure to check out the post-game Twitch stream: