The Golden State Warriors suffered among the most”humiliating” declines in franchise history Friday night during a 53-point defeat at the hands of this Toronto Raptors — a team that came into the game having lost 13 of its past 14 games.
“It,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr stated following the 130-77 reduction . “We just have ruined. Not a whole lot to be mentioned. Humiliating for everybody involved.”
The Warriors, who trailed by as many as 61 points in the second half, set some suspicious marks in a match in which both Stephen Curry (tailbone soreness) and Draymond Green (left finger sprain) sat out.
The Raptors outscored the Warriors by 51 points in the second and third quarters, the largest point differential over a two-quarter interval in a game in NBA history, according to Elias Sports Bureau research. The Warriors became the fourth team from the past 25 seasons to trail by at least 60 points in a game, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. The Raptors’ 53-point margin of victory can be tied for the third biggest in league history with a group that’s 10 or more games below .500.
“I just think the game went south quickly and we have demoralized,” Kerr said. “I believe without Steph and Draymond out that I believe we were a little bit rudderless when things went south. We did not have the internal fight that we needed to sort of get over the hump.”
This was evident in many different different locations, however nevertheless, the stat which may be most jarring for the Warriors is the simple fact that they became the only team in the previous 25 years to eliminate a game by 50 points and not score a fast-break stage. They had just one fast-break attempt the entire game and overlooked it. It’s a massive reason Kerr was so frustrated with his team’s lack of ball movement.
“Our team has been built on sharing the ball,” Kerr said. “When you move the ball in this game, that’s when the magic happens, when you build a power, a karma, the shots tend to go in if you move the ball and you share it. And I just saw one possession after another tonight that was clearly one pass and a shooter. We’ve got to play for each other, and I did not think we did that tonight.”
Last week, veteran Kevon Looney acknowledged that Curry and Green shared messages to their teammates about looking within and seeking to play much better. After Friday’s embarrassing performance, veteran Kent Bazemore said injured former All-Star Klay Thompson shared some ideas with several teammates following the game.
“We are referring to — and Klay is back as well, these men [have] five straight Finals looks. That is by any means not acceptable by these at all. It hurts them more than anything else. Klay was fired up after the game. And this has been the toughest two years watching his guys out there, and him not being able to assist. So I think that it’s lit a fire up under himand Steph and Draymond, they know how important they are to us”
For Thompson, the reduction was even tougher to observe since he is currently rehabbing an Achilles injury that has forced him to miss his second straight season. Bazemore stated Thompson’s message into a couple teammates was simple in its point.
“He’s fired up, guy.
The good news for the Warriors is that Curry is expected to return Sunday from the Atlanta Hawks. Green’s status remains unclear since he was initially expected to play on Friday, however after attempting to warm up he told the coaching staff he couldn’t grab the ball with his left hand because of the finger harm. Green told Kerr he could play, but the veteran coach made the choice for Green to sit.
Since the Warriors wait for their stars to cure, they’ve got a looming issue with the young center they had been expecting would help them this year. Big man James Wiseman, 20, had another tough night against the Raptors, fighting on the two ends of the ground, which has been an ongoing theme as the All-Star break. Kerr explained the Warriors wish to simplify components of the game program for Wiseman so that he can build his confidence back up.
“As a young player, a lot of men attempt to do a lot,” Kerr said. “I think that’s what is happening with James at this time. I think he is such a talented man, and he’s been in a position to do anything he wanted on the floor, however the NBA, the game occurs so fast that you just need to sort of strip down it’let us be good at the things that I can be good at right now and my game will enlarge as we go forward.’ And that’s what we’re trying to talk with James and teach him.
“But the only real way to learn that’s to sense this, and he’s feeling it. So he’ll grow from here and we will stay positive with him, we’ll try to peel back things and keep things very simple and help him build his confidence over the last quarter of this season.”
Since the Warriors hope to see more development down the stretch from the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 draft, they do this with a group which hit the low point of its season Friday night. Kerr is optimistic his team will bounce back after two straight defeats, but he also understands that each individual player has to find his own motivation to get things back on course until it’s too late.
“So there’s times for comedy, there is times for pleasure, there’s occasions for deep discussion and soul-searching. This can be a time to get soul-searching for sure.”