Game Preview: Warriors vs. Knicks - 2/23/21

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BRACING FOR A DEFENSIVE BATTLE
After two tough losses to open this four-game road trip, the Warriors will look to bounce back on Tuesday when they visit the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. This will be this season’s second and final meeting between the two teams, as New York used a strong start to get past the Dubs last month in San Francisco. This matchup features the top two defensive teams in the league in terms of opponent field goal percentage, as New York leads the league in that category (43.1%) and the Warriors are right behind them (44.2%).

LAST TIME OUT
An unfortunate turn of events in the final moments of the fourth quarter capped by a buzzer-beating shot from Charlotte’s Terry Rozier left the Warriors with a stunning 102-100 loss to the Hornets on Saturday. » Full Game Recap

MATCHUP AT A GLANCE

GSW NYK
16-15 15-16
8th in West 7th in East
PTS: 114.4 (10th) PTS: 103.5 (30th)
REB: 43.7 (19th) REB: 47.0 (4th)
AST: 27.7 (1st) AST: 20.8 (29th)

PREVIOUS GAME'S STARTERS
GSW: Kelly Oubre Jr., Mychal Mulder, Andrew Wiggins, Juan Toscano-Anderson and Draymond Green
NYK: Elfrid Payton, RJ Barrett, Julius Randle, Reggie Bullock and Nerlens Noel

INJURY & ROSTER NOTES
GSW: Marquese Chriss (ankle), Kevon Looney (ankle), Klay Thompson (Achilles rehab), James Wiseman (left wrist), Jordan Poole (G League), Nico Mannion (G League) and Alen Smailagic (G League) are out. Team Notes
NYK: Austin Rivers (ilness) is questionable. Mitchell Robinson (hand surgery), Jared Harper (G League) and Ignas Brazdeikis (G League) are out. Team Notes

EP ON A MISSION
After a rough end to January and missing two games in early February due to right knee soreness, Eric Paschall is once again playing at a high level. The second-year forward has come off the bench to score in double figures in five of his last seven games. The two games he didn’t achieve that feat were both against Orlando, but take away those and Paschall has not only scored, but done so in efficient fashion reminiscent of last year’s All-Rookie First-Team performance. He’s shot at least 50 percent from the floor in five of the last seven — the same five five he scored in double figures — and in three of those games he shot 70 percent from the floor or better. When Paschall has a matchup he likes, he exploits it, and the Warriors trust him to do so. He’ll be playing in his home state on Tuesday, in a legendary NBA arena at that, so keep an eye on how he performs.

TEAM LEADERS

GSW NYK
PTS: Curry (29.9) PTS: Randle (23.2)
REB: Wiseman (6.1) REB: Randle (11.0)
AST: Green (8.3) AST: Randle (5.5)

NEW YORK SCOUTING REPORT
The Knicks enter Tuesday’s matchup seeking a season sweep of the Dubs after winning in San Francisco last month. Winners of four of their last five games, New York’s success is based on their defense. They lead the NBA in opponent field goal percentage, opponent 3-point shooting percentage and opponent scoring. They also score the fewest amount of points in the league, a fact that has to do with they fact that they play at the NBA’s slowest pace. That’s not to say that the Knicks can’t fill it up in certain situations. They dropped 40 points on the Warriors in this season’s first meeting between the two clubs. In that game, second-year wing RJ Barrett led the Knicks with a career-high 28 points and Julius Randle came an assist shy of a triple-double. Randle is the team’s leading scorer and rebounder, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if he is named an All-Star when reserves are announced next week.

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