Sunday, March 13, 2011

Warriors lock up T'Wolves, end Love's streak

After the offensive explosion to beat the Magic two days ago, the Warriors showed they can win a grind-out style game in a convincing win over the T'Wolves tonight 100-77.

The Warriors forced the T'Wolves into 27 turnovers, the most by any opponent the Warriors faced this season. The biggest headline of the night was the end of Kevin Love's double-double streak at 54 games. In the win over Orlando, David Lee worked hard to help the Warriors limit the NBA's most formidable big man in Dwight Howard to 13 points. Lee brought that same intensity to the defensive side of the floor against Minnesota's work horse, Love.

Lee was terrific in "doing his work early", meaning he battled Love for position and played love physically. Love was held to just six points and twelve rebounds, as he averages around 20 points per game. The Warriors did a good job to deny post entry with defensive rotations.

Over the past two games the Warriors have improved a detail of their game that has bothered everyone who has followed this team in 2010-11. When competing against elite post players like Dwight Howard and Kevin Love, they have made a point to get their money's worth on a foul call and not allow 'and-one' opportunities. A fingernail foul that leads to a three point play is utterly demoralizing. Either foul with purpose or get out of the way. The message seems to be getting through to the Warriors.

Confidence is high in the Warriors locker room. The Warriors overcame a 21 point deficit to set a franchise record for three point makes, then follow that game with a so-so shooting night, but hold Minnesota to 36 percent from the field. The Warriors didn't get three happy and force bad shots. They played solid defense and scored of turnovers.

It's good to watch this group of players learn how to win together and hopefully this nucleus of Ellis, Curry, Lee, and Wright will stay together while the front office adds pieces around to solidify the roster in years to come.

No comments: