For the first time in three and a half weeks, the Golden State Warriors have a winning streak. Thanks to one of their best offensive performances of the season, the Dubs beat the Toronto Raptors 129-117 to win their second straight game, and climb above .500 once again.
It was an encouraging and remarkably entertaining game, and now it’s time to grade the performances. As always, grades are based on my expectations of each player, with a “B” representing the average performance for any given player.
Note: True-shooting percentage (TS) is a measure of scoring efficiency that accounts for threes and free throws. Entering Friday’s game, league average TS was 57.9%.
33 minutes, 5 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 turnovers, 1 foul, 2-for-4 shooting, 0-for-1 threes, 1-for-2 free throws, 51.2% TS, +4
One of the things that I was looking for coming into this game was for Green to take care of the ball. The Dubs were truly awful in the turnover department in their last game, and needed Dray to set the tone in that phase of the game.
Safe to say he did exactly that. He had seven assists but it felt like 20, and he was a catalyst behind the Warriors having a season-high 40 assists. And only two turnovers that whole time? Hell yeah.
It wasn’t Golden State’s best defensive performance, but he was hardly the reason for that. A very strong game.
24 minutes, 12 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 6 fouls, 6-for-7 shooting, 0-for-2 free throws, 76.1% TS, +12
Looney returned to the starting lineup, and his stats were awesome. The fouls, unfortunately, were a big issue. He racked up three before the first half had ended, and Steve Kerr trusted him to stay on the floor and not pick up his fourth before halftime. He didn’t reward that trust, and as a result, he didn’t start the second half due to foul trouble. He fouled out in the fourth quarter.
But against a huge Toronto team, Looney did a strong job keeping the Dubs alive on the glass, and being an interior presence on both sides of the ball.
Post-game bonus: Tied for the team lead in rebounds.
39 minutes, 35 points, 7 rebounds, 11 assists, 2 steals, 3 turnovers, 1 foul, 13-for-21 shooting, 4-for-8 threes, 5-for-5 free throws, 75.4% TS, +13
A day after being named an All-Star starter for the ninth time in his career, Curry reminded the world why. Just an absolute masterclass. With Nick Nurse’s defense trying to keep Curry off the three-point line, the Chef was more than happy to beat Toronto in other ways. He back cut the Raptors into oblivion in the first quarter, and used the threat of his three ball to beat the defense to the rim. He breezed his way to 20 points while having attempted just two shots from distance.
This whole sequence. Team play.— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 28, 2023
Eventually Toronto started to try and take away the rim, and then Curry stepped back and reminded them why they were trying to eliminate the three to begin with.
30 making move on #WarriorsGround— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 28, 2023
And along the way he dished out 11 assists, almost all of which showed just how well he sees the game.
Post-game bonus: Led the team in points, tied for the team lead in assists.
38 minutes, 29 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 1 foul, 11-for-24 shooting, 6-for-14 threes, 1-for-1 free throws, 59.3% TS, +6
While the Raptors were worried about keeping Curry off the three-point line, the other Splash Brother kept finding ways to spring open for deep shots, while also getting his fair share of back cuts.
Without hesitation. Klay Thompson.— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 28, 2023
And with Andrew Wiggins missing his second straight game due to a non-covid illness, Thompson stepped up in a big way on the glass, which helped the Dubs only lose the rebounding battle by three boards, despite being undersized.
Watch out, world: the other Splash Brother is officially back. For the last few weeks, Thompson has looked like he did prior to his ACL and Achilles injuries.
Post-game bonus: Tied for the team lead in rebounds.
24 minutes, 9 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 turnovers, 4 fouls, 4-for-8 shooting, 1-for-3 threes, 56.3% TS, -13
For a stretch in the beginning of the second quarter, the Warriors were falling apart. And then Poole saved them with a slew of big scoring plays.
But other than those few minutes, he had a really bad game in pretty much every area.
Post-game bonus: Worst plus/minus on the team.
23 minutes, 15 points, 2 assists, 1 block, 2 turnovers, 3 fouls, 5-for-7 shooting, 4-for-6 threes, 1-for-2 free throws, 95.2% TS, +9
Even in games like this one, where six of Kuminga’s seven shots were beyond the arc, his improved patience on offense is on full display. He’s aggressive, he’s smart, he waits for the right play to develop ... and in this case, that right play happened to be some open threes (a few of which were in the corner, which is great to see), and he happened to drain them.
buckets brought to you by JK— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 28, 2023
Going 23 minutes without a rebound is slightly inexcusable, though he was more active on the glass than the donut would suggest.
There’s no way around it: Kuminga has become one of the core parts of the bench rotation, and the Warriors are better for it.
16 minutes, 10 points, 6 rebounds, 1 foul, 3-for-5 shooting, 1-for-3 threes, 3-for-3 free throws, 79.1% TS, -1
Green seems to be public enemy No. 1 with the people in the Golden State of Mind comment section, but I dunno ... games like this sure make him feel like a pretty critical part of the team!
11 minutes, 2 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1-for-4 shooting, 0-for-3 threes, 25.0% TS, +6
The emergence of Kuminga has definitely made Lamb’s role a lot smaller. For a while he felt like a lock to have his contract converted, but a healthy Wiggins and Kuminga makes Lamb a bit less important, and if the Warriors can get anything from Andre Iguodala or Moses Moody, we might see Lamb end the season on a two-way contract.
Loved the passing in this one, but he didn’t do much else.
33 minutes, 12 points, 3 rebounds, 11 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover, 1 foul, 5-for-10 shooting, 2-for-5 threes, 60.0% TS, +24
It’s hard to believe that a huge part of the fanbase was pretty low on this signing for a while. Where would the Warriors be without DiVincenzo?
DDV has become the most trusted player outside of the starting lineup ... even more than Poole, I’d argue. He set a career high in assists in this game, while only having one turnover. And yet his best moment might have been when the broadcast showed him on the bench, mic’d up, coaching up James Wiseman.
I don’t know how the Warriors can keep him after this year, but damn ... I sure hope they can find a way.
Post-game bonus: Tied for the team lead in assists, led the team in plus/minus.
Friday’s DNPs: James Wiseman
Friday’s inactives: Patrick Baldwin Jr., Andre Iguodala, Ty Jerome, Moses Moody, Ryan Rollins, Andrew Wiggins