The “Splash Brothers” feast against the Raptors!
Fred VanVleet’s 3/3 from distance and the size of the Raptors greatly hampered the Warriors early in the game. Stephen Curry then set an example by using Canada’s aggressiveness to his advantage to attack the circle relentlessly. His 13 points led Golden State back, but a 2+1 from VanVleet gave Toronto the lead (36-34).
While Pascal Siakam (2/12 in shots) and Klay Thompson (3/10 in shots) compete in clumsiness, the activity of Scottie Barnes and the awakening of Jordan Poole keep the two teams neck and neck (54-53 ). We had to wait for three consecutive defensive stops from Golden State and the first 3-pointer from Klay Thompson to see the Warriors take the lead at the break (63-62).
The Warriors lost as many balls in the first three minutes of the third quarter as in the entire first, and Toronto took advantage thanks to the rise of Pascal Siakam to regain the advantage (81-76). Following Stephen Curry, the Warriors responded by ending the period 22-13 thanks mainly to Jonathan Kuminga’s 4/4 3-pointer in the corners (98-94)!
The Warriors’ lead reached eight units but the pair of VanVleet-Siakam prevented the Raptors from ambushing (108-105). However, it was the “Splash Brothers” who decided to kill Toronto’s hopes. The two players hit the mark four times and they created for their teammates to take an eleven point lead (125-114).
That’s why the Warriors picked up a well-deserved victory before leaving for a tough “road trip” against the Thunder, Wolves, and Nuggets.
WHAT YOU SHOULD REMEMBER
– Steve Kerr, Nick Nurse, and defensive alternation. Opponents in the 2019 NBA Finals, where Nurse updated the defensive strategy of the box, the two coaches once again battled for creativity from the first quarter. The Raptors started the game defending so high on the outside of Golden State to take away their 3-point attempts that they left the key open. A passage in zone 1-3-1 then 2-3 did not solve the problem. For his part, Steve Kerr picked a box on Fred VanVleet after the point guard scored his first four shots. The strategy worked on two possessions and got the Warriors on their game.
– The Warriors set the sights. After finishing the first 6/22 from 3-point range, the Warriors turned the tide in the second half, hitting 12 of 19 attempts from long range. If Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson started a battle in the third quarter, Jonathan Kuminga made a surprise by going 4 of 4 in the last three minutes of this period. His four shots came in similar actions. A pick-and-roll for Stephen Curry from one side of the pitch with nobody in the corner. Using two players, Curry moved the “roller”, forcing the entire Toronto defense to move to the axis, leaving Kuminga alone in the other corner. Golden State finished the second half 12/19 from 3-point range.
– The Raptors squandered their second chance. Toronto finished the game with 11 more shot attempts than its opponent, especially with 14 offensive rebounds. Unfortunately, they only got 8 points from his 14 catches. They were clumsy throughout the match near the circle, finishing the meeting with only 46% success in this sector. Add in 13 of 21 free throws and you understand that the Raptors rarely capitalize on Golden State’s mistakes.
✅ Stephen CurryKlay Thompson. The Warriors point guard showed a way for his teammates. He took what the Raptors defense gave him and attacked them in the game to finish with 35 points, 11 assists and 7 rebounds. His Splash Brother started the match on 3/10 to shoot, before rectifying the situation. He scored 17 points in the second half on 8/14 shooting, including 6/9 from 3-pointers.
✅ Donte DiVincenzo – Jonathan Kuminga. In the wake of Stephen Curry, Donte DiVincenzo also attacked the circle, with 12 points and he delivered 10 caviar. Uninspired in the first half, Jonathan Kuminga had a decisive impact in the second half. He scored 12 of his 15 points in the third quarter.
✅ Scottie Barnes. Both cautious and ubiquitous, Scottie Barnes blackened the stat sheet with 24 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists.
✅ Fred VanVleet. Faced with a Stephen Curry of big days, the leader of Toronto responded in the present. He started on fire, before taking matters into his own hands when his side needed it in the second half. He finished with 28 points and 10 assists but was unable to prevent his team from losing.
⛔ Pascal Siakam. The Cameroonian never really found his rhythm except for five minutes in the third quarter. He finished with 21 points but was 8/26 on shots.
Golden State (25-24) : traveling to Oklahoma City on Monday.
Toronto (22-28): back-to-back trip to Portland on Saturday.