Warriors Bounce Back in Win Over Kings
Strong Second Half Performance Lifts Dubs to Victory in Team's First Trip to Sacramento's New Arena
The Warriors overcame a slow start and took control of the game in third quarter of Sunday’s 117-106 victory in Sacramento.
Careless turnovers, missed shots and failing to match the energy put out by the Kings all contributed to the Dubs trailing by as many 16 points in the second quarter. But then the Dubs flipped the switch.
They closed the second quarter on a 13-4 run to make it a seven-point game at the half, and that momentum rolled over into the third quarter. And while it was the likes of Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson doing the bulk of the scoring during a game changing 22-3 run that gave the Dubs the lead for good, it was the play of Zaza Pachulia that really sparked the Warriors.
Matched up with the NBA’s best scoring center, Pachulia made life awfully difficult for Sacramento’s DeMarcus Cousins, and his hustle and intelligent play resulted in him gathering several loose balls and giving the Dubs extra possessions.
“He’s just a smart player. He’s in the right place and he’s got good hands,” Head Coach Steve Kerr said. “He gives us the toughness and the defense that we need down there.”
Pachulia’s effort produced a line of 10 points – on 4-for-5 shooting – and seven rebounds (five offensive) with three steals, and the Warriors were a plus-15 in his 22 minutes on the floor. It was his fourth straight game with at least 10 points, and if that’s not enough, Pachulia played a crucial role in what turned out to be the Play of the Night.
Stephen Curry knocked down five 3-pointers and led the way with 30 points – his third straight game with at least that many, and he did much of his damage in the third quarter. Curry had 12 points in the period as the Dubs out-scored the Kings 39-22 in the period.
Kevin Durant also had a big game for the Warriors, scoring a very efficient 28 points on 15 shots, while also stuffing the stat sheet with seven rebounds, six assists and four blocks, his third straight game with three blocks. And speaking of doing it all, Draymond Green was a team-best plus-21 while getting nine points, 10 assists, seven rebounds, two blocks and two steals.
All that added up to the Dubs’ 13th straight win over the Kings, and the first in Sacramento’s brand new Golden 1 Center. Additionally, the Dubs extended their NBA-record streak of 124 straight games without suffering consecutive losses.