The Warriors played an interesting game against the New Orleans Hornets at Oracle Wednesday night on St. Patrick's day. Golden State trailed the Hornets by as much as 21 points with 5 minutes remaining in the third quarter. The Warriors began to rain in the three's, make some defensive stops and chip away at the lead, without their rookie of the year candidate Stephen Curry, who sat out with a left ankle sprain. The stars of the game were the three D-League call ups: Anthony Tolliver, 30 points; Reggie Williams 22 points; and Chris Hunter 17 points. Tolliver carried the team in the first quarter and Williams caught fire from three point land in the fourth. Monta Ellis did a great job distributing the ball in Curry's absence and George continued his efficient shooting going 2-3 from three point range. If Chirs Paul were healthy, the Hornets would have won, but the "if so-and-so was healthy" hypothetical questions apply to no team more so than the Warriors. The point is the Hornets got cold in the forth, while the Warriors shot lights out.
The game last night against the Spurs went the way history has dictated over the last 13 years: a loss. Yes, that's right, the Warriors have not won in San Antonio since 1997. The Warriors have also not produced an all-star since 1997. I have a feeling both of these dubious streaks will come to an end very soon and I think Stephen Curry will have an impact. Last night's match up was a joke, varsity versus frosh, a snake against a mouse, a lion toying with it's lame zebra prey. Every player in a Spurs uniform did damage of some kind in a totally non-competitive game.
Getting destroyed by the Spurs is not entirely bad for the Warriors. At least no one got hurt, right? Playing against the most disciplined team in the league shows the Warriors where they really stand and puts the D-League players in perspective. The Warriors will have to chose which D-league player to keep on the roster, if any. The offensive explosion against the Hornets won all three D-League players the support of Warriors fans. Then against a quality team like the Spurs, Chris Hunter completely disappeared, failing to score a single point and Anthony Tolliver struggled mightily on both sides of the ball. Reggie Williams fared the best out of the D-Leaguers, scoring 15 points on 3-4 three point shooting.
As a Warriors fan, you have to appreciate what the D-League guys have contributed to a decimated Warriors roster. If the Warriors keep a player, it will probably be Anthony Tolliver for his versatility. I really like the offensive game of Reggie Williams and I think he will be a great offensive spark off the bench for some team in the NBA, wherever he ends up. Chris Hunter has breakthrough moments, but he lacks ability to finish around the rim and the Warriors will most likely drop Hunter after the season.