Well, it happened. The Golden State Warriors lost again, dropping a 129-114 contest to the Minnesota Timberwolves for their sixth loss in eight games.
It turns out it’s not easy to win when Draymond Green and Klay Thompson (and Andre Iguodala, and Nemanja Bjelica) don’t play, but I don’t think that excuse is going to go very far with many fans.
So let’s break out the red pen and grade the players, weighting for our expectations of each.
Note: The league average true-shooting percentage (TS) entering Tuesday’s games was 56.1%.
30 minutes, 12 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 3 turnovers, 4 fouls, 5-for-13 shooting, 2-for-6 threes, 46.2% TS, -13
Wiggins came out of the gates firing, with eight of the team’s first 10 points. And then he went ice cold, which has unfortunately been a trend for the last month.
Andrew Wiggins hasn't scored 20 points since January 31, a 10-game skid during which he's averaged 13.6 points with 41.5/36.2/41.2 shooting splits.— Brady Klopfer (@BradyKlopferNBA) March 2, 2022
After the game, Wiggins seemed to think his slumping was simply a matter of missing shots.
Wiggins on his rough shooting night: "Had some good looks, just didn't make them."— Golden State of Mind (@unstoppablebaby) March 2, 2022
I can’t say I agree with him. He’s reverted to some bad habits, settling for long twos and off-balance jumpers. He hasn’t been nearly as aggressive as he was earlier in the season, as he’s drawn just 17 total free throws during the 10-game slump.
He also had some pretty notable defensive lapses in this game, thought credit to him for grabbing some boards and dishing the rock.
Post-game bonus: Tied for team lead in rebounds.
27 minutes, 2 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 1 turnover, 3 fouls, 1-for-2 shooting, 50.0% TS, +2
Looney was given the impossible task of trying to contain Karl-Anthony Towns, and Towns absolutely feasted, with 39 points on 14-for-22 shooting. Looney defended KAT a lot better than any other Warrior (no surprise there), and on offense did a phenomenal job of finding the open man. His playmaking has been great lately, and this is also fun:
LOONEY pic.twitter.com/sFmfUHEvZm— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) March 2, 2022
Post-game bonus: Led the team in assists, tied for the team lead in rebounds.
33 minutes, 34 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 turnovers, 1 foul, 10-for-24 shooting, 5-for-16 threes, 9-for-9 free throws, 60.8% TS, -10
For much of the game it felt like Curry was the only Warrior capable of putting the ball in the hoop. And it’s a testament to how poorly the team is playing right now that it was only in those moments where Curry was scoring that it ever felt like the team had a chance.
Rang3⃣— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) March 2, 2022
After registering 24 assists to just four turnovers in the last two games, Curry took matters into his own hands a little more by filling up the points column. That came at the expense of the playmaking, and he won’t be happy with the assist and turnover numbers. But ultimately when Curry scores 34 points with good efficiency, he’s the last person to point at when assigning blame.
How did Steph drop this in?!?! pic.twitter.com/wAdpWsPi1b— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) March 2, 2022
Post-game bonus: Led the team in points.
Gary Payton II
27 minutes, 14 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 turnovers, 4 fouls, 5-for-10 shooting, 2-for-5 threes, 2-for-4 free throws, 59.5% TS, +15
Pretty strong game by GPII, who has really been finding ways to get easy looks at the basket lately.
GP2 made an incredible catch and rolled it in pic.twitter.com/ANC1ajilWI— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) March 2, 2022
You know what to expect from him on defense, though it would be nice if he could cut back on the fouls a little bit.
Post-game bonus: Led the team in plus/minus.
7 minutes, 6 points, 1 assist, 2-for-2 shooting, 1-for-1 threes, 1-for-2 free throws, 104.2% TS, +3
Moody got another start due to Thompson’s injury, and was playing brilliantly. He made an open three, attacked the rim on multiple occasions, played quality defense, and showed off some impressive playmaking.
GP2 couldn’t finish but this Moody dish pic.twitter.com/FsUJuR1WbV— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) March 2, 2022
Unfortunately he also took an incredibly violent (albeit inadvertent) elbow to the face, which not only cost him this game, but potentially future ones as well.
Steve Kerr said Moses Moody's eye is "swollen shut" after taking a Karl-Anthony Towns elbow.— Brady Klopfer (@BradyKlopferNBA) March 2, 2022
23 minutes, 13 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 turnovers, 1 foul, 5-for-12 shooting, 1-for-5 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 50.5% TS, -14
As is always the case, Kuminga had a handful of plays that made you incredibly excited. But on the whole, it wasn’t a particularly good game for him. He looked pretty out of control, and struggled a lot on defense. He got tunnel vision a bit on offense, and just seemed to do a bit of harm when on the court.
Otto Porter Jr.
17 minutes, 2 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 6 steals, 2 turnovers, 1-for-4 shooting, 0-for-2 threes, 25.0% TS, -11
It’s a tough life being a bench player and only taking a few shots a game, because you end up with nights like this, where Porter’s shooting efficiency is dreadful because variance can really do its thing with such a small sample size.
However, forget the scoring — Porter had SIX steals in just 17 minutes. That’s more than a steal for every three minutes! It was just the 21st time this season that a player has had six steals (Green, Curry, and Payton have all done it as well), and he did it in just 17 minutes!
That’s worth a good grade in my book.
22 minutes, 4 points, 1 rebound, 4 assists, 2 steals, 3 fouls, 1-for-3 shooting, 0-for-2 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 51.6% TS, -8
JTA did some pretty good things in this one, and we’ll always take four assists without a turnover. He struggled a little bit on defense, not making much of an impact while having a handful of fouls, but otherwise it was a fine game from him.
27 minutes, 15 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 5 fouls, 6-for-8 shooting, 1-for-2 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 84.5% TS, -18
It didn’t really feel like Lee had such a good offensive game, but ... he did! And that’s all that matters. He gave the Dubs a scoring spark when few others could.
D-Lee splashes from the corner pic.twitter.com/rNwfZ39VBm— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) March 2, 2022
Unfortunately his defense was pretty brutal in this game, but points are points and efficiency is efficiency.
27 minutes, 12 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 turnovers, 4 fouls, 5-for-12 shooting, 1-for-6 threes, 1-for-1 free throws, 48.2% TS, -21
I’m not sure what was a bigger indictment: the fact that Poole — a bench player — managed to have three fouls in the first quarter alone, or the fact that Steve Kerr left him in the game, seemingly unconcerned about losing Poole.
It wasn’t the offensive struggle that plagued Poole against Dallas, but it was another rough offensive game.
“We need more aggressiveness.”— Kylen Mills (@KylenMills) March 2, 2022
-Steph Curry on Jordan Poole’s recent struggles. Curry wants him more involved in the attack - being assertive, demanding the ball, attacking the basket, also teammates getting Poole the ball. Curry says he’s sure Poole will respond. #DubNation
Here’s hoping JP can find his groove soon.
Post-game bonus: Worst plus/minus on the team.
Tuesday’s inactives: Nemanja Bjelica, Chris Chiozza, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala, Klay Thompson, Quinndary Weatherspoon, James Wiseman