Saturday, February 2, 2008

Golden State: 127 Charlotte: 96

Plenty to smile about

Well that was easy. The Warriors have had their well doccumented struggles putting away inferior teams and even losing to them but tonight against the Bobcats. On a night where individuals seemed to be the storyline e.g. Richardsons return, Webber on the bench and Davis suppossedly taking out his fustration over his All Star snub on Felton none of that came to circumstances tonight. It was a night where it was all about team play and victory was assured right before half time. With a five day break Golden State made things a little easier for themselves

First lets get to Jason Richardsons return. Isn't it ironic that one of my favourite players struggles tonight going 2-10 whilst Dunleavy has a decent game on his return. Life is unfair but then again the decent tribute video showing both J-Rich and Webber highlights under the the boys are back in town helped softened the blow. On the other hand the unselfish team play was a joy to watch. Baron only had 6 assists out of the team's 32 but tonight was a night where he could conserve his energy looking for the open teamate at every opportunity. Monta also made sure that the Bobacats horrible interior defense also suffered even more by finding Andris for some easy baskets.

Defensively this is the second night in a row the Dubs looked extremely solid. Biedrins did a fine job of protecting the basket, rotation was quick and plenty of passes were deflected. Against the Hornets it was the same thing. Granted apart from Okafor posting up 20-18 the Bobcats weren't anything special offensively but I'm giving credit tonight for the special D something i haven't said too often this season.

Out with the old in with the new

By the time the 3rd quarter came around and Golden State were comfortably up 69-48 Nellie finally caved in to something the fans desrved all seas. It should have been done in the Cleveland game but when you're up by 21 Davis, Jackson Harrington etc deserve all the rest they need. The bench started in the 3rd quarter and the contributions the fans saw were immense. Did we really want Gary Payton at one stage when CJ Watson looks more then capable of being a decent replacement. He has a terrificly aggressive game but it can be controlled and he did get 11 points in 18 minutes. Whats even more impressive is he understands W’s sets on offense and defense after just two weeks. What a find!

But enough of CJ Brandon Wright was the player of the night for me. His one handed dunk was a thing of beauty and showed the group of fans maybe he wasn't a wasted pick. His wingspan first leaps out but he did show ways he can also impact a game. His reach for rebounds is excellent. He’s always a shot-blocking threat, even when off the ball, and he looked awfully comfortable collecting a board and pushing the ball up court. With webber on the court and his passing abilities it should be further interesting to see whether Wrights game will make that extra push. With 8 minutes left in the game and the Warriors up by 30 there was finally a POB sighting rare in these parts. Defensively his game hasn't evolved but it was garbage time and his two baskets off comfortable moves showed he still does have what it takes to stay with the Warriors. However there is no doubt in my mind that this offseason he will be saying hello to a new coach and a new team.

Two games that there hasn't been much to complain about. Even though we won handily against mediocre opposition something thats been hard to achieve this season the main positive of tonight was seeing the starters rest even if there is a five day break. It's encouraging to see that finally the Warriors are finding their rythm no better time to be doing it then right after the Gasol trade to the Lakers. Hopefully our own Chris Mullin can make the same type of loopsided trade the Grizzlies just made but with our players well rested there's no time to worry yet....

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