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Player grades: Warriors vs. Pistons

Assessing every Golden State player’s performance from the team’s 122-119 loss to Detroit.

Draymond Green and Isaiah Stewart nose-to-nose while grabbing each other in an altercation Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors saw their five-game winning streak come to a crushing end on Wednesday night, when they lost 122-119 to the Detroit Pistons after Saddiq Bey made a buzzer-beating three.

So it goes. Sometimes injured teams play well, keep it close, and lose. That’s how the NBA works, and how this works is that I grade those players, weighting for expectations, with a “B” representing the average performance for that player.

Note: True-shooting percentage (TS) is a measure of scoring efficiency that accounts for threes and free throws. League average entering Wednesday’s games was 57.7%.

Draymond Green

30 minutes, 4 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, 1 block, 2 turnovers, 2-for-4 shooting, 0-for-2 threes, 50.0% TS, 0 plus/minus

Green got ejected late in this game, though I don’t think it was a particularly fair ejection. It was a second technical foul that was earned on the dreaded double tech, where he clearly was not trying to get involved with Isaiah Stewart.

The impact scoring that was present earlier in the season was absent in this one, but he was strong everywhere else. He had some elite defensive plays, and a few passes — particularly early in the game — that were other-worldly.

Grade: B

Post-game bonus: Led the team in assists.

Kevon Looney

28 minutes, 8 points, 15 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 2 blocks, 2 turnovers, 4 fouls, 4-for-6 shooting, 66.7% TS, -5

Another dynamic night cleaning the glass for Looney, and the Warriors needed every moment of it since they were up against a double-center lineup of Stewart and Jalen Duren.

It’s a mark of Looney’s growth that he put up 8/15/2/2/2 — without his MVP point guard in the lineup — and no one bats an eye. And it’s a mark of who he is that when Bob Fitzgerald referenced the label that Steve Kerr gave Looney — the team’s “moral compass” — guest broadcaster Steph Curry called it the “perfect” description.

Grade: A-

Post-game bonus: Led the team in rebounds.

Klay Thompson

34 minutes, 30 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block, 3 fouls, 11-for-23 shooting, 3-for-10 threes, 5-for-5 free throws, 59.5% TS, 0 plus/minus

We could easily be having a very different discussion about Klay. One game after dropping 54 points in a heroic performance against the Atlanta Hawks, Thompson hit a leaning, fading, gorgeous three-pointer with one second on the clock to tie the game.

Had Saddiq Bey not followed it up with one of the best shots of the year, the Dubs and Pistons go to overtime, the Warriors have a great chance to win, and we spend the night discussing a spectacular Klay moment.

Alas. Thompson was still good. By far the team’s best offensive player, and I thought he moved well on defense. On most nights these stats would probably earn him an A-, but he really put the offense on his back in the final few minutes.

Grade: A

Post-game bonus: Led the team in points.

Donte DiVincenzo

34 minutes, 5 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 turnovers, 2 fouls, 2-for-4 shooting, 1-for-3 threes, 62.5% TS, -14

DiVincenzo has been shining since injuries forced him into the starting lineup and a bigger role. In this game, though, he couldn’t keep his magic going. DDV just looked out of rhythm all night in this game, in nearly every phase of the game. He couldn’t find any way to make an impact as a driver or ball-handler (though Jordan Poole being a little too reliant on being the primary ball-handler doesn’t help), and it wasn’t his best defensive effort. He still showed off some great athleticism, but his usual energy wasn’t as present as it usually is.

Grade: C-

Post-game bonus: Worst plus/minus on the team.

Jordan Poole

34 minutes, 24 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 turnovers, 2 fouls, 9-for-22 shooting, 3-for-10 threes, 3-for-3 free throws, 51.5% TS, +4

A much better game for Poole than he had on Wednesday, though a lot of the problems still persisted. He dribbled too much in this game, and often for no reason. He took some poor shots and had some infuriating turnovers and mistakes, particularly down the stretch.

It’s been a tale of two Pooles lately, with JP electrifying with his scoring and ability to sometimes carry the offense, while also frustrating with his ball-dominance, turnovers, and inefficiency. He remains a good player with a star ceiling, but it will be nice seeing him take a step back when Curry returns.

Grade: C

Post-game bonus: Best plus/minus on the team.

Anthony Lamb

28 minutes, 17 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 turnover, 4 fouls, 6-for-9 shooting, 3-for-5 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 86.0% TS, +2

Elite game off the bench for Lamb, who gave the Dubs a massive spark in the second quarter when they absolutely needed it. He played a mostly mistake-free game, while knocking in shot after shot. Hard to see Golden State staying in this game if he hadn’t been playing.

Grade: A+

Patrick Baldwin Jr.

11 minutes, 5 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 1 foul, 1-for-3 shooting, 1-for-3 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 64.4% TS, -3

Baldwin getting to play some minutes has been one of the best parts of the Warriors recent battle with the injury demons. I don’t expect Baldwin to stay in the rotation once the team is healthy, but he’s showing enough comfort on the court and in the system — and enough potential defensively — that I think we can pencil him in for a rotation spot in 2023-24.

Grade: A-

Ty Jerome

27 minutes, 18 points, 3 assists, 1 turnover, 2 fouls, 7-for-11 shooting, 3-for-4 threes, 1-for-1 free throws, 78.7% TS, -2

It’s very interesting seeing how the Warriors handle their two-way contracts relative to a team like the Pistons, who are one of the worst squads in the NBA this year, and clearly not playing for wins ... despite winning this game. Detroit’s pair of two-way contracts are undrafted rookies who have combined to play 57 seconds this season. Golden State’s pair have prior NBA experience, and combined for 55 minutes and 35 points in this game.

The downside is that Jerome and Lamb may never develop into Chris Boucher or Alex Caruso. The upside is that they may develop into Quinn Cook or Juan Toscano-Anderson ... or perhaps already have.

Anyway, Jerome played great.

Grade: A

Moses Moody

15 minutes, 8 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 turnover, 2 fouls, 3-for-5 shooting, 1-for-3 threes, 1-for-2 free throws, 68.0% TS, +3

I thought this was one of Moody’s best games, and would have loved to see him get a little more playing time.

One area where I’ve been critical of Moody has been his inability to make things happen. On defense he’s often sound, but not an impact player. On offense he usually stands in the corner and waits to see if he’ll find an open three.

To wit: in the last five games, Moody had played 64 minutes and recorded just a single assist. In this game he dished out four dimes — just the second time he’s reached that number in his career — and needed only 15 minutes to get there.

More games like that and I suspect he’ll start seeing more minutes.

Grade: A

Wednesday’s DNPs: Ryan Rollins

Wednesday’s inactives: Steph Curry, JaMychal Green, Andre Iguodala, Jonathan Kuminga, Andrew Wiggins, James Wiseman

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