NBA.com Daily Confidential

Matt Barnes' 20 points in a loss to the Seattle SuperSonics in December were fairly unexpected. Strong scoring from the Golden State Warriors forward has since become common.

After wasting a career-best performance from Barnes, the Warriors look to match their longest home winning streak of the season when they face the SuperSonics on Saturday.

Barnes set a career high with 36 points, but it wasn't enough as Golden State (17-17) lost 144-135 at Memphis on Wednesday night.

Barnes, in his fourth season out of UCLA, entered the year averaging 3.7 points and has posted 11.4 for the season. But he scored 29 Tuesday night against the Hornets, and Wednesday's total marked the fourth time in the last six games he's scored at least 20 points.

"It's (coach Don Nelson) having confidence in me," Barnes said. "You ask any player. If the coach is behind you 100 percent, the best part of your game is going to come out. Early on in the season, I was looking over my shoulder if I made a mistake and wasn't sure if I was going to be in or not. Now that he has confidence in me, no matter how I'm shooting, he tells me to keep shooting."

Barnes' performance against the SuperSonics (13-22) on Dec. 10 wasn't enough to lift the Warriors to victory, as they lost 117-115 in Seattle.

It was the fourth time Barnes reached double figures in scoring in his first 19 games. Since then, he is averaging 17.6 points and is shooting 45 percent from 3-point range.

Barnes will now try to help Golden State continue its outstanding play at Oracle Arena, where it is 13-5 and averaging 109.3 points per game. The Warriors have won five straight at home, giving them a chance to match their longest home winning streak of the season. They won six in a row from Nov. 9-18.

Seattle, coming off a 111-93 loss to New York on Friday night, has lost three straight and 11 of 14.

After averaging 29.5 points in his previous two games, Sonics guard Ray Allen struggled against the Knicks. The All-Star was double-teamed nearly ever time he touched the ball, finishing with a season-low 11 points on 3-of-10 shooting.

"You've got to step up and knock down a couple of shots and make them pay for doubling," Allen said.

Allen is averaging 30.0 points and shooting 45 percent from beyond the arc in his last six games against Golden State, but Seattle went 2-4 in that span.

No one else was able to take the scoring load Friday for the Sonics, who are averaging 93.0 points in their last four games.

Chris Wilcox led Seattle with 13 points. Damien Wilkins added 12 but shot only 4-of-16. Reserve guard Earl Watson scored 12.

The Sonics have signed forward Andre Brown to a 10-day contract. Brown leads the NBA Developmental League in scoring at 22.8 points and is second in rebounding at 10.8 playing for Sioux Falls.

Golden State and Seattle have split two games this season, with each team winning at home.


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