Gameday: Warriors vs. Celtics - 1/10/14
Stephen Curry, ladies and gentlemen. He did it AGAIN.
The Warriors got back on the winning track in their first game back on #WarriorsGround, defeating the Boston Celtics 99-97 behind yet another Stephen Curry game-winning jumper. Curry totaled 19 points, seven rebounds and four assists in the clutch performance, while Andre Iguodala scored a team-high 22 points to go with seven assists. The win pushes the Dubs’ record to 25-14. They’ll look to keep it rolling on Wednesday when they take on the visiting Denver Nuggets. Until then, a very well-deserved four-day break.
On tonight's win:
“First of all it was a great win. Our mindset is to put them in the bank. We are playing in the Western Conference – a couple of teams lost tonight and we had an opportunity to win. Playing in this league I know how tough it is coming off of a long road trip. These guys responded and did whatever they had to do gut out a win against a team that had didn’t quit is well coached and work extremely hard. We found a way to execute offensively and did a great job of taking care of the basketball.”
On Stephen Curry's final shot:
“We were prepared, we were prepared. Whether they tried to trap him, or tried to show or help – we were prepared to make the adjustment. Steph (Stephen Curry) did a good job of reading it and D-Lee (David Lee) did a great job setting the screen forcing them to make the decision and switch. I’ll take my chances with Steph (Stephen) Curry on the floor against a power forward on the perimeter. Kris Humphries did a good job of trying to keep him in front and Steph (Stephen Curry) did what he does best, made a play and hit a big time shot.”
On Andre Iguodala:
“I thought he was great. I loved the fact that he was more aggressive offensively tonight and a night where some of the other guys didn’t have it. He carried us for a great stretch of that game by making plays. There’s no secret that is why we brought him in. The things he does night in and night out basis– can’t put a price tag on that.”
On if Andre Iguodala is closer to 100% after his hamstring injury:
“He got it going early, but I don’t know if he is 100% yet. We’ll still be keeping an eye on him and we are going to be patient. He’s a guy that does so many good things on the floor. I thought early on he got it going and hit some shots and switched on him putting (Jared) Sullinger on him and he was aggressive. He’s a big time playmaker. Some nights he’s going to be making plays for himself and some nights it will be for other guys. He did a great job of knowing when to be aggressive offensively and when to be a playmaker tonight.”
On asking Andre Iguodala to be more aggresive:
“He’s got the green light just like everybody else. It’s funny that people early on talked about LeBron (James).turning down shots. He’s the greatest small forward to ever play the game. He’s a mixture of Michael (Jordan) and Magic (Johnson). He’s a playmaker. To tell Andre (Iguodala) to be more aggressive is trying to tell him to do something that he’s not. He’s a playmaker and I want him to pick and choose when to look to score and when to make plays. I trust that he knows his body and he’ll do a great job of reading situations. Tonight he was very aggressive offensively and when he does that he’s another weapon on the floor and makes us even tougher to guard.”
On getting a win with the next few days off:
“It’s huge. I was tired today so I know my guys were physically drained before the game. These are the games that the good and great teams find a way to win. Then you can tell your body we can relax tomorrow and Sunday. It’s an opportunity for us to put one in the bank. Now it’s recovery time. Time for guys to do whatever they need to do in order to get ready for the next game.”
On getting a win the first game back from a long road trip:
“It’s a big win for us. You go through a season and you come off of a long road trip and its tough the first one back at home no matter who you are playing. This is big for us. We get four days off now and I can spend time with my family and get rested up before Denver.”
On if this shot will give him confidence moving forward:
“I never lose my confidence. Everyone on the team we tell each other that no matter how bad we are shooting we are good enough to hopefully be in ball games late to be able to make plays down the stretch. Teammates are talking to me and I’m talking to them. We’ll be alright as long as we stick to the system that Coach Jackson has put into place.”
On the fact that he may not get to rest during the All-Star break:
“I hope I don’t get to rest. That’s a good problem to have.”
On playing at home after a long road trip:
“It’s always going to be a tough game no matter who we play. Whether it was Boston, or the worst team in the league, or one of the best teams in the league or a middle-of-the-road team, it didn’t matter. We were playing more against ourselves tonight than an opponent.”
On Andre Iguodala:
“We had big contributions from everybody. Andre played great for us. I think most players did a great job off the bench, but Dre is a great player for this team because he doesn’t worry about scoring or stats. He’s quite happy, kind of like myself, making sure we’re winning games and we’ve been doing that a lot lately.”
On tonight's win:
“It was great to get the win. I think part of it probably ends up being mental. It’s always talked about, but for us, we got in after a grueling trip out east, got in and basically had one day of just rest and came in here and played against a team that, the strength of Boston’s team is they play hard and they really force you to work. We knew that we were playing on fumes, especially the starters that played a bunch of minutes, but we knew we had a break coming up so we just had to get through this one. I’m very proud of our guys for finding a way to win.”
On if recent success has put the team back on schedule:
“Yeah, I think most importantly we’re playing the kind of consistent ball that we’ve been looking for. All you can do each game is come out and try to play to our identity. Like you talked about to start the year, we had a couple of stretches where we didn’t do that and now I feel like we’ve put together some pretty good performances. Even tonight, we didn’t shoot the ball particularly well. We were, I think, a little bit of a tired basketball team, but our defense kept us in the game and we grinded one out. That’s the way we have to play. We got contributions from a bunch of different guys that came to play.”
On the final play of the game:
“The play was diagramed for Steph [Curry] and me to be in a screen and roll. We assumed that they were going to trap the screen and roll and that he was going to throw it back to me and we would have a four-on-three advantage on the backside. I think everybody was pretty surprised, including Steph, that they switched the screen and roll, and at that point that’s a no brainer with Steph getting iso on a five man. If he happened to miss, which I didn’t expect him to, I had Avery Bradley on the block for a tip in so it played to our hands and of course Steph made a great move and an unbelievable shot.”
BACK ON #WARRIORSGROUND
The Warriors didn’t make NBA history on their season-long seven-game road trip, but they sure did come close. Wednesday’s loss to the Nets was the only one suffered by the Warriors throughout the duration of the trip, and they return home with a very strong 6-1 record in those games. Back on #WarriorsGround for two games, the Dubs will host the Boston Celtics on Friday night. This will be the first of two matchups between the two teams this season. The two sides split their games last season, with each team winning on their home court. A limited number of tickets are still available for this interconference showdown, and all fans in attendance will receive a Stephen Curry Cheer Card as part of another Authentic Fan Friday, presented by Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. GET TICKETS
LAST TIME OUT
The Warriors came up a few points short of NBA history tonight, falling to the Nets 102-98. Stephen Curry did his best to get the Warriors over the top, notching 34 points, seven assists and five rebounds. David Lee put together another solid performance with 20 points and seven boards, but the road weary Warriors just didn’t have enough legs to close it out with perfection. The loss concludes the Dubs’ season-long seven-game road trip with a 6-1 record, and makes them just one of three teams in NBA history to post a 6-1 trip in consecutive seasons. Pretty darn good. GAME RECAP
At 24-14, the Warriors are nearing the hallway point of the season with a very respectable record, despite the difficulty of the early-season schedule. No team in the league has played more road games than the Dubs (23), nor has any Western Conference team played fewer games against teams from the East than the Warriors (11). That bodes well for Golden State in the future, as the schedule has to balance out eventually. Starting with Friday’s contest against the Celtics, the Warriors will play 10 of their next 14 games at home before heading into the All-Star Break. The Dubs are 11-4 at home thus far this season, and with plenty more games to come in front of the raucous Oracle crowd, one would only expect that record to improve.
Stephen Curry capped off the long road trip with another impressive performance, notching his ninth 30-point game of the season, good for second most in the NBA. He was terrific throughout the road trip, and fans apparently took notice, as Curry has moved up a spot to #2 in All-Star voting amongst Western Conference guards. At this rate, Curry would become the first Warriors player to start an All-Star game since Latrell Sprewell did so in 1995. While Curry has most definitely earned it with his stellar play all season long, he’ll need to keep up the good work for a few more weeks before anything is solidified. It’s not illogical to expect him to do his part. Fans can do theirs too. DUB THE VOTE
BOSTON SCOUTING REPORT
You don’t often trade away your franchise cornerstones without suffering a bit of a setback, as the Celtics have helped to confirm. After sending Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to Brooklyn in a trade prior to the season, the Celtics have undergone some growing pains thus far, currently sitting in 10th place in the East with a 13-23 record. Recently, things have taken a turn for the worse, as Boston has lost their last six games, and nine of their last 10. Still, this is the NBA, and no team can be overlooked. Jeff Green and Jared Sullinger have had good seasons for them in the frontcourt, while Jordan Crawford has undergone a bit of a career revival under the tutelage of first-year Head Coach Brad Stevens. After such an impressive road trip, it would be a shame if the Warriors undid some of that progress with a disappointing loss at home. If they play their own game and respect the opposition, they stand a good chance of adding to this recent stretch of wins.
GSW: Festus Ezeli (recovery from right knee surgery) and Jermaine O’Neal (right wrist surgery) are out.
BOS: Rajon Rondo (torn ACL, right knee) is out.