Postgame: maybe those margins aren't so razor thin?
Klay gets hot as Warriors disassemble Lakers
Maybe I was wrong in my preview article in calling the margins razor thin, because the Golden State Warriors just absolutely demolished the Los Angeles Lakers. Maybe this doesn’t matter - a single game doesn’t swing a series - but maybe it does.
Klay Thompson led all scorers with 30 points, Stephen Curry played mostly a decoy and distributor role, ending up with 20 points and 12 assists, and Draymond Green did a little bit of everything with 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 8 assists.
Lebron James had 21 in the first half but it was a monkey’s paw success, as he seemed to be a little to free with his shot in the second half. He only scored two more points in the entire second half, and ended up with 23 points, 7 rebounds, and just 3 assists.
The Warriors were outplayed in the first game of this series, but outexecuted the Lakers in game two to even it up in convincing fashion. The Warriors can feel like an avalanche sometimes, and tonight, they ran over the Lakers in a lot of ways. Los Angeles overloaded on Curry, which he accepted. There’s no defense that Curry and the Warriors haven’t seen, and they very much looked like the cool, level-headed veterans as they cut surgical holes in the Lakers’ best efforts.
Kerr strikes again
He can’t keep getting away with this!
The pregame news was that Kevon Looney was ill, and though he would play, he wasn’t going to start, and would play low minutes. He ended up doing fantastic: 6 points, 8 rebounds (3 of them on the offensive glass), and was +11 - but his minutes were indeed limited (12 minutes).
JaMychal Green filled in for Looney and proved (once again) that just maybe coach Steve Kerr might know what he’s doing. While many of the most ardent supporters of Dub Nation (myself included) pine for Kuminga, Kerr slotted in that guy who has been in the rotation all year. One of the annual key veteran's minimum deal players, JMG has been spotty at best this season. But it’s the playoffs. The land of small sample sizes. And tonight, it was JMG’s turn to impact a critical game in a positive way.
And let’s also be sure to throw some flowers at Steve Kerr for his offensive system. Curry could have easily forced it into the ready teeth of a long-armed Los Angeles defense and done alright. But instead, it was that selfless egalitarian Kerrball that is so beautiful when it works and depressingly ugly when it doesn’t.
Tonight it worked. And the Lakers probably aren’t necessarily freaking out, but the coaches are going to walk into work tomorrow morning with a laundry list of things to figure out. This was a pretty thorough beating. Maybe it’s just one game; but maybe it’s more than that.
If the Warriors are too small, they might also be too darn quick.
Whew. Series tied up. Now the teams will get one day off before running it back a couple of times in LA.