» Blog Archive » Thoughts on Game No. 20: Spurs 123, Warriors 88
  • Dec

    By Geoff Lepper

    It’s too bad the Warriors had a chartered bus ready to usher them out of AT&T Center on Saturday after Golden State’s dismal sleepwalk through a 123-88 defeat at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs.

    It would have been fascinating to count up just how many cabs were needed to deliver them back to the team hotel.

    Thanks to two championships in the last five years, the Boston Red Sox have shed their decades-old label of a team that requires 25 cabs for 25 different players due to a lack of unity and camaraderie, both on the field and off.

    Based on what took place Saturday in San Antonio, it looks as though that mantle has been taken up by the Warriors. Things seem like they’ve gotten to the point where it’s time to declare “every man for himself” on the S.S. Nelson, which is taking on water at a frightening rate.

    Check out what transpired over one 6-minute stretch of the first quarter, during which time the Spurs raised their lead from 8-6 to 28-16.

    Golden State had 17 possessions during that timeframe:

    ** On one possession, the Warriors made three passes, going counter-clockwise around the perimeter until the ball reached C.J. Watson in the right corner. Watson used his agility to change direction quickly enough that Matt Bonner was forced to concede the non-shooting foul.

    ** On 11 possessions, the Warriors made only one pass in the frontcourt before the receiver would either make a move to the hoop or hoist a jumper. As a team, the Warriors went 3-for-9 from the floor on those possessions, with one trip to the foul line (two shots converted by Jamal Crawford) and one non-shooting foul drawn (Andris Biedrins on Tim Duncan).

    ** The remaining five possessions involved no passes at all. Twice, Crawford took an outlet pass and called his own number on jumpers, going 0-for-2. Twice, Corey Maggette collected rebounds and dribbled the length of the court, once getting fouled (he knocked down both FTs) and once missing a pullup jumper over Michael Finley. The fifth possession came about when Biedrins grabbed an offensive board and was whistled for knocking over Fabricio Oberto while trying to score the putback.

    All told for those 17 possessions: 3-12 FG, 4-4 FT, 1 TO, minus-10 on the scoreboard.

    And the good times were only beginning.

    It was shortly after that hideous stretch that Maggette corralled a loose ball in the lane after Biedrins lost control while fighting through a double team. Maggette missed on an 12-foot fadeaway, but the tipped rebound came out to him at the 3-point line.

    Even though there were three Spurs in the lane — i.e. nobody in position to grab an offensive board — and two open teammates on the left wing with better shooting credentials (Crawford and Anthony Morrow), Maggette took one step in and let loose with a 20-foot jumper.


    As chronicled on Marcus Thompson’s blog, Crawford reacted incredulously to that turn of events.

    Maggette took a shot, came back down, took another shot. The rebound caromed back to him. Without so much as a blink, he took another shot. Jamal Crawford turned to the bench with a WITW (What in the world …) look before he ran down court on defense.

    and then . . .

    I found out more about Jamal Crawford’s reaction to quick-draw Corey. When Maggette missed those consecutive shots in a span of a humming bird’s flap, Crawford looked at the bench and said ‘Are you serious?’

    But it’s not just the starters that are exhibiting symptoms of “Gimmie Mine” disease. Even Ronny Turiaf — who’s been a consummate professional in dealing with the yo-yoing playing time doled out by Don Nelson — checked in to start the second quarter and jacked up five shots, all mid-range jumpers, in his first 6 minutes of play.

    And the problems are not confined to the offensive end. The Warriors instruct their big men to jump out on just about every pick-and-roll play, but the ONLY way that plan works is if teammates pick each other up by rotating from the weakside to cover the big man rolling to the basket. And then rotate to pick up the man who just got left open so the big man was covered, etc., etc.

    In the first quarter alone, there were multiple instances of the Warriors failing to watch out for one another: When Jackson tried to leak out on a missed 3-pointer by Finley, he left Bonner open, a fact which Crawford somehow missed despite looking right at it, leading to a Bonner layup.

    When Biedrins blitzed a Duncan/Tony Parker screen-roll, Maggette was far too late and ineffective at coming over to provide any help. And again, a few minutes later, Maggette didn’t cross the lane to try to stop Finley from dunking after shedding Watson with a spin to the baseline.

    That last play finally drew the ire of Nelson, who called timeout and lit into Maggette.

    Who knows? Maybe a large dose of Thunder will cure this malady on Monday. Otherwise, the ship will just keep listing.

    This is the first time in Nelson’s second go-round with the Warriors that he’s 10 games under .500. (The most they slipped below break-even in the previous two seasons was nine games, at 26-35, in ’06-‘07.) . . . The last time Golden State fell 10 games below .500 this early in a season? The 1999-2000 campaign, which featured a motley roster stocked with Jason Caffey, John Starks, Larry Hughes (via midseason trade), Antawn Jamison as the alleged star and both Cummings boys, Vonteego and Terry. The start was so poor that P.J. Carlesimo was let go on Dec. 27 with the club at 6-22, replaced by general manager Garry St. Jean. . . . Another inbounding turnover? Seriously? . . . Only Manny Pacquiao’s total, uncompromising demolition of Oscar De La Hoya saved the Warriors from suffering the worst beating in the sports world on Saturday.

    The Lineup Project
    The small lineup fared the worst, although it also faced the stiffest competition, since none of the Spurs’ starters played more than 22 minutes.

    Lineup              GSW    OPP    Time
    Large                  5         7         3:49
    Turiaf-Biedrins     10        9         5:21
    Medium              52        72       26:50
    Small                 21        35       12:00

    Without Monta. . .
    Since consecutive loss No. 21 in San Antonio was very much expected, the Warriors remain on pace for a 7-19 record when Monta Ellis’ suspension ends after Dec. 17.

    Contact: geofflepper@48minutes.net

10 Responses to “Thoughts on Game No. 20: Spurs 123, Warriors 88”

  1. lol I dont blame Crawford I think he has to be in shock .He just left a team who just all got on the same page after years of losing to come to a team with a guy on it who just doesnt get it at all . I now see why the the only time the Clippers won with maggette was when Dunleavy benched him and started Ross the entire season.

    I think this is all nellies fault because no pg could help this team because the bad habits Nellie let go from the start of camp are still continuing. There was no point in bringing in a point guard if you are still gonna play nothing but isolation basketball and guys still wont make the extra pass or even run the non isolation plays

    These guys dont know their roles and thats nellies fault..

  2. Ray,

    The Warriors defense is non-existent and I think the problem goes well beyond Maggette. Until the Warriors defend and rebound as a team, the opposition is going into games against this team like a it’s a scrimmage. It’s a lot easier for players to show what they are capable of doing when they feel no pressure at all which pretty much sums up the Warriors defensive effort during games.

  3. Good post, Geoff. Loved your point that no one’s passing — AT ALL.

    The key stat, of course, is that the W’s put up 11 dimes all game. That’s right. 11 assists! (RT actually led the team; the Spurs got more than three times our number. Hmmm.) Incredible — but revelatory of the fact that “his” team has now OFFICIALLY given up on Nelson. He’s become irrelevant except for his continuing destruction re (1) idiotic rotations and (2) even more idiotic trades and contracts (including his own feather-bedding). In short, he’s toast. He just doesn’t realize it yet. But then we KNOW he’s the slowest of studies, per his routine Q4 stupid small ball madness. (Every day Nelson more and more resembles Denny Crane with his “mad cow” affliction. It’s almost humorous.)

    Love what Maggette’s doing. Just looking for his numbers, and now bitching about the fact that he took the W’s (foolish) dollars over lesser money (he’d have had to start at $5.8MM) with the Spurs. He dereves what he got. Our problem is that we got him.

    Crawford’s interesting. He’s got some offense — and a clue. I just wish he’d play (or learn) a little defense. With much lesser talent on the Knicks, his team was moving up because they have an actual coach instead of a comical blowhard. Now, on a team with more talent, he’s watching guys like Jack and Maggette just go freestyle, with little thought for team play. (How Maggette can shoot threes is beyond me — since he always misses short. Bet on it.)

    Nelson’s made it pretty clear he won’t/can’t coach. He tyeaches nothing. The team is in a long backslide. And he still keeps forcing that stupid small ball game. He’s lost — but, thanks to Rowell (and where’s HE, by the way) he’s now $12MM richer. So, expect to see all of Nelson’s cunning aimed now at getting fired so he can buy more booze and party heartier on Maui. OK by me; Rowell deserves this for his insanity. Just get the Fat Man outta here, please.

    Finally, after seeing what Rowell and Nelson have done to him — and the team — in the last six months, I’ll bet it’s hard for Mully not to break out into a grin from time to time. He’s earned it — and Nelson’s Judas-like back-stabbing (while professing his love — what a bald-faced liar he’s become, a fact even Bruce Jenkins is slowly tumbling to) is just the cherry on top for Mully, who’ll likely be off to better times in NYC next year, if not sooner.

    This could have been a fun year. But Rowell and Nelson had other priorities. Oh well. We W fans are used to this, aren’t we?

  4. The current Warriors are the best example of the trickle down theory of abundance. Nelson got his, Jax got his, Maggette got his, and so on. I just hope this infection of “I’ve got mine” doesn’t infect Monta when he returns, but I don’t see how it won’t. Our role models are ball hogging pigs who are learning at the feet of the master pig. Pretty soon he’ll be suing Cohan (again) on his way out the door. Rowell and Cohan are getting exactly what they deserve but sadly, we are getting the shaft. I guess I’m really starting to lose it. For the first time in 15 mostly bleak years, I’m seriously thinking of not renewing our tickets. This year is a sick, bad joke on the loyal fans of who supported the franchise through really bad times. Fire Nelson now and start over before it is too late, if that time hasn’t already passed.

  5. commish,

    Not renewing your season tickets is the only way you can accurately send a message to the Warriors that will illustrate your level of dissatisfaction. The rest of the non-season ticket holders really don’t have a vote to cast as far as the Warriors are concerned.

  6. Geoff,
    Great stuff. Why is that you, Adam Lauridsen, and TK are the only ones with a clue?

    Your typical strong post.

    Not true about having a vote. There are merchandise sales and the NBA package. I’m a Bay Area transplant in the Sacramento area and I’ve purchased both. Time to reconsider next year. If I do boycott, I’ll also send a letter for the FO to shred.

  7. Who signed Magette anyway? 10 MIL. PER…where is that guy, I’d like to have a word with him..

  8. all good points, however i think we could take a big step in the right direction by solving our rebounding problems. maybe play two bigs at the same time- or even three. i have not seen hendrix yet in the d-league, but his stats look great and people who know are raving about him. (hendrix=millsap on roids).

    i agree magette is anightmare, but if we played him at 3 we would at least have the rebounding, shotblocking, and defensive rotation problems partially solved.

    one more interesting piece about the rockets game. wright didnt play while nelson was coach. as soon as he was booted, wright went in. wtf. the team would be so much better if our 12th man (kurz) didnt play over our 6 10 lottery picks.

    oh well, i guess this is what it means to be a gsw fan :(

  9. It ain’t Jack.

  10. http://www.82games.com/0809/08GSW9.HTM


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