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Warriors fuse vets with youth movement, knock off LaMelo's Hornets in Chase
The Dubs are hella hard to beat at home, huh?
The Golden State Warriors knocked off the Charlotte Hornets 110-105 last night in Chase Center. I have some thoughts!
Does anyone still think we need LaMelo Ball?
LaVar Ball’s baby boy is a heckuva player, just like his daddy predicted. He’s clearly Charlotte’s best player, a former Rookie of the Year with swagger, skill, and size. There were several times he came crashing into Warrior with a big elbow that made me think jeez maybe this guy shoulda went into WWE!
Oh wait, LaMelo already DID do WWE:
I can see why many Warriors fans would have wanted him drafted over James Wiseman in the 2020 draft. The Dubs did pass on Ball to pick up JW after all. And it must have been a tough pill to swallow for those LaMelo Truthers to see Wiseman struggle with injuries and a high learning curve while the baby Ball put up highlight reel performances on a nightly basis.
Last night Ball snagged 10 rebounds and dished out 4 assists, while scoring 21 points and shooting a ghastly 7-of-25 from the field (1-of-6 from 3PT range). Here’s a breakdown of how he fared against GSW’s defenders individually:
Donte DiVincenzo: 2-of-7
Jordan Poole: 2-of-4
Draymond Green: 0-of-4
Moses Moody: 0-of-3
Klay Thompson: 0-of-3
Jonathan Kuminga: 1-of-2
Kevon Looney: 0-of-2
ALCATRAZ! 24 HOUR LOCKDOWN! DDV is a real pest of a defender, something the Warriors needed to have after losing defensive specialist Gary Payton II in the offseason.
But it was Kuminga’s defense that turned heads last night. He hulked over Ball, moving his feet defensively to mirror the speedy guard, and using his bulk to keep Ball from getting to his spots on the floor. They are both listed at 6-foot-7, but Kuminga’s freakish athleticism and thicker build made him look like a giant next to Ball.
Check out Apricot’s breakdown on JK’s fantastic play here:
Forget LaMelo, let’s talk more about GSW’s youth movement
Now that you’ve reviewed the footage on JK’s big night, here’s some great quotes on his performance:
Nice work from the #7 overall pick in the 2021 draft. He finished with 14 points and 6 rebounds on 6-of-6 shooting from the field, with 2 assists and 2 steals in 22 minutes.
But he wasn’t the only young Warrior to show out last night. One of the big reasons the Warriors probably didn’t draft Ball was they already had a spicy young guard to complement the Splash Bros: Jordan Poole. His 24 points on 9-of-20 shooting were crucial to the win.
He jitterbugged his way through the Hornets defense, creating a shot for himself or others at will. It was clear Charlotte had no answer for him.
There was a sequence at the end of the first half where Poole did a one-man fastbreak against the Hornets defense and threw up some garbage that hit the backboard and gave Charlotte the chance to score right before the halftime buzzer. The crowd, his coach Steve Kerr, and Draymond Green were all in head-shaking exasperation by that low IQ moment.
But hey, with the young guys you take the good with the bad right? #development
Alsoooo how about that James Wiseman fella, eh? 8 points on 4-of-7 shooting, 0 fouls, and excellent shot contesting in just under 10 minutes of play off the bench ain’t bad. It’s clear that he’s understanding defensive principles better, and when he’s in the game suddenly the other team. seems a bit more wary of getting to the rim. Perhaps because he’s a 7-footer with freak athleticism???
Shout out to the OGz
Are we tired of praising future Hall-of-Famers? I hope not. Draymond Green led the Dubs in rebounding with 10 boards and dished out 5 assists as well while playing stingy defense.
And Klay Thompson was in pure Splash Bro mode, scoring a game high 29 points on 10-of-22 shooting from the field (5-of-12 from beyond the arc).
I think back to those dark days during the lost 2019-2020 season where Green was out there with a rookie Poole and mismatch of hoopers trying to survive without Thompson or Stephen Curry. Those losses were tough to watch, but on nights like last night where the Dubs aren’t at full strength it’s good to see Green knows how to make it happen with the ingredients around him. Having Klay and JP are helluva ingredients to throw in the pot, baby!
Home court advantage is real
Every time the Warriors do something bad, here come everybody with the stats. LOOK AT THESE BAD ON/OFF NUMBERS FOR THE BENCH! LOOK AT THAT ROAD RECORD! KLAY ISN’T WHAT HE USED TO BE JUST LOOK AT HIS TRUE SHOOTING PERCENTAGE!
That’s cool and everything but what about the fact that the Warriors are damn near unbeatable in Chase Center? They have won 14 out of 16 games at home, which is the best in the NBA. How is that possible considering the injuries, rotation inconsistency, and inconsistent shooting?
Maybe it’s because you’re there Dub Nation. You’re putting out such good vibes that our hometown boys can’t help but lay the smackdown on their foes. Give yourself some credit!