Well, that was pretty pathetic. The Golden State Warriors put their worst foot forward against the team that most likes to beat them, losing 131-110 to the Memphis Grizzlies in a performance that can only be described as terrible.
I don’t want to write about it. You don’t want to read about it.
But let’s stick to this together hands and feet.
As always, grades are measured based on my expectations for each player, with a “B” grade representing the average performance for that player.
Note: True-shooting percentage (TS) is a measure of scoring efficiency that takes threes and free throws into account. Going into Thursday’s games, the league average TS was 58.1%.
30 minutes, 16 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 steals, 5 turnovers, 1 offense, 5-for-9 shooting, 0-for-1 threes, 6-for-6 free throws, 68.7% TS, – 1
Green actually had a secretly good game. Still… this probably creates unfair expectations, but after his public feud with Dillon Brooks this week, I sort of expected Dray to lead a rejuvenated defensive offense.
Instead, despite the bulletin board material, and despite one team missing its starting point guard, starting center, and a key bench player, the Warriors’ defense was truly atrocious, even relative to their expectations… which are low, as they’re are the third worst defensive team in the league on the road this season.
Green had also pointed out how out of control and sloppy and unfocused the Warriors have become.
So I do not know. Part of me wants to give him a decent grade. But I just can’t.
Bonus after the game: Led the team in assists.
34 minutes, 29 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal, 4 turnovers, 3 fouls, 10-of-19 shooting, 4-of-8 threes, 5-of-6 free throws, 67.0% TS, + 2
The fact that Curry has played as well as these last two games has made it all the worse that the Dubs have been mostly uncompetitive. They have too much experience and too much talent – even with Andrew Wiggins, Jonathan Kuminga and Gary Payton II sidelined – to play as a one-man show. But that’s kind of what they’ve been.
Another high-turnover game points to the team’s disengagement at the moment, and Steph took a few defensive turns.
But he still plays like one of the best players in the league, and the Warriors seem to be intent on doing nothing with it.
Bonus after the game: Led the team in points, tied for the team lead in rebounds.
28 minutes, 14 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 3 fouls, 6-for-14 shooting, 2-for-7 threes, 50.0% TS, -19
Klay isn’t playing badly per se, but his play has exposed some of the team’s problems. In the first fifteen minutes of this game, the ball was hit towards the scorer’s table and it looked like it was going to go out of bounds. It would have been the Warriors ball if it was. Thompson was closest to it and could easily have caught it. He took a few half-hearted steps and then decided to just let the ball go out of bounds and let the ball in… except one Memphis player who hadn’t given up play caught up with it while it was still in play game was, and ended with a one-on-zero quick break.
That seemed in line with Tuesday, when Thompson flipped at least twice that made you think “why did you throw it there if there’s no player to catch it?”
None of these are unforgivable mistakes in a vacuum, but the whole team is making them now, so everyone feels like a straw that breaks the camel’s back, and everyone feels like it accurately explains what’s going wrong with the whole team.
Also not very good defense in this game.
21 minutes, 2 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 turnover, 1 offense, 1-for-5 shooting, 0-for-4 threes, 20.0% TS, -25
One of DiVincenzo’s worst games in a long time. Perhaps his worst since the start of the season. Delivering nothing offensively as a goalscorer or playmaker, he had terrible turnovers to blow a three-for-two and was taken to task defensively by Memphis’ physicality.
He is now going 8-for-34 from the field in his last five games and 5-for-25 in threes. He will bounce back. But with key players sidelined, the Warriors need that backlash really fast.
34 minutes, 22 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal, 4 turnovers, 1 foul, 5-of-10 shooting, 2-of-5 threes, 10-of-10 free throws, 76.4% TS, – 33
The Warriors put Poole in the starting lineup, so they went for a four-guard lineup, and after the game Steve Kerr admitted that they were “getting too cute”.
But lost in all this was that Poole played his best game in a long time and was one of the best players on floor for the Dubs.
Don’t get me wrong, there were still problems. Turnovers are still on the edge of control, and his defense – much improved throughout the year – is really fading.
But he did what we – and I suspect Kerr, and probably his teammates – asked him to do. He stopped settling for heat checks and brave threes. He attacked the rim. He got layups and lived at the free throw line. When he took threes, it was open shots.
Poole’s staggering decisions have become staples of losses, but they were nowhere to be found in this one.
Bonus after the game: Worst plus/minus in the team.
18 minutes, 0 points, 1 rebound, 4 assists, 2 steals, 1 foul, 0-of-3 shooting, 0-of-3 threes, 0.0% TS, +4
I’m not going to say that Iguodala was great in this game because that would be…well, that would be a blatant lie, wouldn’t it? But it was a game where you can easily see why Kerr trusts him so much and what role he can play on the team.
Iguodala was a calming presence. He helped reset things when they weren’t going in the right direction of Golden State. It was kind of like when the respected older person in your family comes to dinner and suddenly everyone starts behaving better. The team was more disciplined and focused when Iguodala was on the field.
Bonus after the game: Led the team in plus/minus.
Yes Mychal green
18 minutes, 9 points, 1 offense, 3-for-8 shooting, 3-for-7 threes, 56.3% TS, -17
It wasn’t JMG’s best game, but he gave the team some much-needed energy. And his trio of triples in the third quarter were a huge chunk of the Warriors getting another run, even if that run fell short.
He had some defensive possession, though the Warriors need more than a donut in the rebounding column if he’s going to play serious minutes.
Still a nice energy boost.
19 minutes, 2 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block, 2 fouls, 1-for-2 shooting, 50.0% TS, -4
Looney looked a lot better than Tuesday, although it’s also clear that his back pain – which has put him on the injury report for the past two games – is bothering him a bit. He just doesn’t look 100%.
But he still did a lot of good things and the Warriors were generally better with him on the field.
Bonus after the game: Tied for the team leader in rebounds.
Patrick Baldwin Jr.
14 minutes, 5 points, 1 rebound, 2 blocks, 1 turnover, 3 fouls, 2-of-8 shooting, 1-of-6 threes, 31.3% TS, -2
Baldwin is caught up in a bit of a shooting slump that makes his quick trigger look a little suspicious. But if you look at his mechanics, you’ll understand why the Warriors encourage him to fire every time he’s open… and why he’s obliging.
He showed a few more sides of his game in this game, and I thought he had some really nice defensive possessions… he even blocked a few shots!
The future looks bright for the boy, even if it is rawer than tartare.
23 minutes, 11 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 1 foul, 3-for-4 shooting, 3-for-4 threes, 2-for-2 free throws, 112.7% TS, 10
Pretty awesome offensive play for Jerome. Pretty awful defensive play for Jerome. He only has four games left on his two-way contract.
Thursday’s inactives: Jonathan Kuminga, Anthony Lamb, Moses Moody, Gary Payton II, Ryan Rollins, Andrew Wiggins