A game featuring the teams with the two best records in the NBA went down to the wire, but the Warriors didn’t make enough plays down the stretch of a 104-96 loss in Phoenix on Tuesday night.
After an Otto Porter layup brought the Warriors within one with 5:19 left in the game, the Dubs didn’t score another field goal until the 43.6 second mark. In between there, the Suns went on a 10-1 run and out-scored the Warriors 24-18 in the fourth quarter to secure their 17th straight win.
The loss marked the first time this season that the Warriors were held to fewer than 100 points, but the Dubs will have a chance to even the score when they host the same Suns squad at Chase Center on Friday.
POOLE CATCHES FIRE
Nearly five minutes went by in the opening quarter before Jordan Poole took a shot, but the third-year guard soon made his presence felt. After making his first two shots of the game, Poole really got it going when he scored all Warriors points during an 11-0 run in the opening period. Poole matched his career-high for points in a quarter with 16 of his game-high 28 points coming in the opening period, during which he hit six of his seven shot attempts including four 3-pointers.
BENCH STEPS UP
After shooting 61 percent from the floor and knocking down six 3-pointers during a 35-point first period, offense was hard to come by for the Dubs. But the play of the bench kept them in the game. Otto Porter Jr. had his second consecutive game of at least 16 points, connecting on four of his eight 3-point attempts, and Gary Payton II was a plus-17 in his 16 minutes of game action, contributing eight points and seven rebounds in addition to impacting the game with his usual tough defense. Plus, he provided one of the game’s top highlights with a thunderous slam in the third period.
In addition, Chris Chiozza gave the Warriors some quality minutes, dishing out four assists and knocking down his only shot of the game, a transition 3-pointer that brought the Dubs within one point with 7:24 left in the game.
SUNS DO IT WITH DEFENSE
Although star guard Devin Booker exited the game in the second quarter with a left hamstring injury, the Suns were able to win the game behind some stellar team defense. Phoenix held the Dubs to 33 percent shooting over the final three periods of the game. Most notably, the Suns forced Stephen Curry into one of the toughest shooting nights of his career. Curry shot just 4-for-21 from the floor and did not make a field goal in the fourth quarter.
WIGGINS PLAYS THROUGH PAIN
Andrew Wiggins was questionable all day after dealing with back spasms, but the Warriors’ ironman played through the discomfort and made some key plays when the Warriors needed them most. After an offensive drought resulted in a nine-point deficit in the third period, Wiggins faced up a smaller defender in the block and attacked the basket. Wiggins finished in the paint and completed a three-point play, sparking a 14-5 run for the Dubs.
ROUND 2 ON FRIDAY
The Warriors and Suns are now tied for the best record in the NBA with both teams standing at 18-3, and they'll face each other again on Friday at Chase Center, and again on Christmas Day in Phoenix before closing out their regular season series on March 30 in San Francisco.
More Notables ...
- Golden State’s loss snapped a season-high-tying seven-game winning streak… Prior to tonight, the Warriors last defeat was to the Hornets on 11/14 in Charlotte.
- Golden State fell to 7-2 on the road this season.
- The Warriors failed to score 100 points for the first time this season and came into tonight’s game as the only team who had scored at least 100 points in every game… Dating back to last season, Golden State had scored at least 100 points in 43-straight regular season games (23 last season, 20 this season)… The last time the Warriors were held under 100 points was on April 2, 2021 at Toronto (77-130).
- The Warriors turned the ball over 23 times, matching their season high set in an overtime loss on October 28 vs. Memphis.
- Golden State shot a season-low 41.9% from the field (prev. 42.2%, 11/14 at CHA).
- The Warriors lost their first game of the season when grabbing 50-plus rebounds (now 6-1).
- Jordan Poole scored 16 points in the game’s first quarter, matching a career-high for points scored in any quarter (2/8/20 vs. LAL)… He finished with 28 points, his sixth time leading the team in scoring this season.
- Draymond Green grabbed 11 rebounds, marking his fifth outing 10-or-more rebounds on the season.
- Otto Porter Jr. scored 16 points and has scored in double figures in four of the last five games, including a season-high 18 points last game vs. the Clippers.
- Gary Payton II matched his season-high in rebounding with seven off the bench (prev. 11/14 at CHA).