Warriors Stumble Against Sacramento

Quinn Cooks Stars in Defeat

Golden State’s eight-game home winning streak came to an end on Friday, as the Dubs fell 98-93 to the visiting Sacramento Kings. Without their three top scorers in Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson – who all missed the game due to injury – the Warriors led for the vast majority of the contest, but proved unable to finish off the victory. Quinn Cook was sensational, registering career-highs with 25 points and five three-pointers. Draymond Green stuffed the stat sheet with 14 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists and four blocks, while Nick Young added 16 points and three threes. With the loss, Golden State drops to 52-17 on the season.

The injury bug continues to hit the Warriors hard. After losing Curry to a sprained ankle and Klay Thompson to a fractured thumb within the last nine days, Golden State got some more bad news on Friday when it was announced prior to the game that Kevin Durant will miss at least the next two weeks with an incomplete rip cartilage fracture. It marked the Warriors’ second-straight game without three of their All-Stars, as Durant took Draymond Green’s place on the injured list, and the reigning Defensive Player of the Year was able to return following a one-game absence.

Entering Friday’s game, Curry, Durant and Thompson had combined to make 572 three-pointers so far this season. Outside of those three players, Nick Young led the team with 97 makes on the season. So, playing without their three best shooters, one naturally would have expected Golden State to struggle from three-point land on Friday, but that’s not how it worked out. Not to start, at least.

The Warriors were on fire coming out of the gates, knocking down three three-pointers within the opening three minutes. They’d go on to total seven made threes in the entire first quarter on only nine attempts, after totaling just six treys total in their win over the Lakers on Wednesday. Quinn Cook led the pack, accounting for 13 points on a perfect 5-for-5 shooting in the first frame, making all three of his attempts from beyond the arc.

However, as the game would progress, the Warriors would feel their All-Stars’ absence more and more. Golden State made only one three-pointer in the second quarter, and would sink just two in each frame of the second half. Golden State finished the game 12-of-26 from three-point range (.462), but Sacramento’s two additional threes proved to be the difference in the contest.

Despite the loss, Cook was so good, he deserves a second mention here. Starting his fourth-straight game in place of the injured Curry, Cook provided the best performance of his career to date. He got off to a great start in that first quarter, and would carry it over into the second before heading into halftime with 18 points after making all seven of his attempts from the field and all four attempts from three-point range. At the 8:09 mark of the fourth quarter, Cook drained his final shot of the night, a 27-foot three-pointer to give the Warriors a slight 81-80 advantage. That trey established two career-highs, giving him 23 points and five three-pointers on the evening.

In addition to his point, assist and rebounding totals, Green had another typically great night on the defensive end against the Kings. His four steals were a game-high, and his two blocks in the contest not only led the team, but pushed his career block total to 500. He becomes the eighth player in franchise history with 500 blocks.

The Warriors will attempt to get back on the winning track when they travel to Phoenix to take on the Suns on Saturday on the second night of a back-to-back.


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