Anthony Davis and LeBron James look on

From the Rafters: Downhill Shooting Stifles Golden State’s Triples 

You know how in the old Western movies, two cowboys would meet in the middle of the town square, exchange a severe look or two, a tumbleweed would blow by, and then both men would back away very slowly, with their hand on their holster, prepared to draw their gun the second their opponent blinked? 

That was kind of the scene at the Chase Center tonight in San Francisco. Except the middle of the town square was a 94’ by 50’ basketball court, and it wasn’t two cowboys, but ten men facing off, nobody backed away slowly, they charged head on with speed.  

But it was in fact a shootout, a showdown in the Wild West, and after a 117-112 victory, the Lakers were the last ones standing... for tonight.  

“Helluva Game 1,” Anthony Davis said after a dominant 30 points, 23 rebounds, and four blocks performance. 

The Warriors went into half with 15-made triples, but the Lakers were still up by one, 65-64 heading into the third quarter.  

Klay Thompson had 18 points and was 4-for-7 from three, Jordan Poole threw in another 13 points and was 4-for-6 from the arc, and Steph Curry tallied another two three-pointers for ten points. The Warriors were shooting everything from a distance, and hitting their mark, but it wasn’t enough.  

Why? Because the Lakers’ shots were aimed at the heart.  

The Lake Show might as well have been in escrow on 1 Warriors Way because they owned the paint, they outshot Golden State 54-28 down low. The Warriors on the other hand, aimed from the outside, they threw up 53 triples, and after a hot start, they ended the night with 21 made threes.  

But the Lakers dabbled downhill and were rewarded for their bravery. They didn’t avoid the Warriors’ defense and their aggressiveness awarded them 20 more-made points from the line.  

It’s going to be interesting to see what adjustments are made on both sides in the next meeting of this California Clash. Can the Lakers continue to control the paint? Do the Warriors have more firepower inside them from outside?  

Darvin Ham left his team with his, “Fight the urge to exhale and be comfortable ...we didn’t come here for just one.” Game 2 is Thursday.