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Back to the future: Warriors vs. Bulls

How did Golden State do with their keys to victory against Chicago?

Chicago Bulls v Golden State Warriors Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors got a much-needed win on Monday night, breaking a four-game losing skid by beating the Chicago Bulls 116-102.

It was a total team effort, with coach Steve Kerr praising every member of the team.

But did they hit on their pregame keys to victory from my preview? There’s only one way to find out.

Contain Vooch

The key: Limit the amount of easy shots that Nikola Vučević gets.

The outcome: Playing in just his second game with Chicago, the Bulls new All-Star had a spectacular game, registering 21 points on 9-for-13 shooting, plus 9 rebounds and 6 assists.

And the bulk of those buckets came right around the rim. In fact, all four of his misses came from beyond the three-point line.

It was a strong overall defensive effort from the Dubs, though you wouldn’t necessarily know it from the way Vučević scored.

Still, if there’s a silver lining, allowing an All-Star center to only take nine shots in the arc, and only attempt three free throws, is a victory. But when he makes all of them? Well, less so.

Grading the key: 2 out of 10.

Patient offense

The key: Make Chicago work on defense, and don’t just settle for early and bad shots.

The outcome: The Warriors definitely made Chicago’s defense work, and it’s not a coincidence that the Bulls started to fade in the fourth quarter. The Dubs did a good job of working the ball around until it found the right hands — on many occasions players passed up a mediocre shot, only to find a cutting teammate for an easy layup.

As such, the Warriors had 28 assists which, while not a great number, is plenty respectable.

Grading the key: 7.5 out of 10.

Out-shoot, out-run

The key: Win the three-point battle and the transition offense battle.

The outcome: Let’s start with shooting. The Warriors dramatically out-shot Chicago, making 16 triples to just 6 for their opponent. While the Dubs simply attempted more shots from distance than their counterparts, they also made them at a much higher clip: 42.1% compared to 25.0%. That’s an enormous win.

The Dubs also had some great moments in transition, but ultimately did not win that battle, with just 11 fastbreak points compared to Chicago’s 15. But when the three-point discrepancy is that big, you can give up some ground in the open court.

Grading the key: 7.5 out of 10.

Add it all up and it’s good enough for the only grade that matters: 10 out of 10 on the “win the game” key.

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