Wizards pounce on stumbling Warriors
ORACLE ARENA — Sloppy execution, lapses in defense and failing in the final moments. That’s how basketball games are lost.
Guilty of all that and more, the Warriors subjected the Oracle sellout crowd to an ugly 88-85 loss against the Wizards Tuesday.
A disappointed Mark Jackson said his team isn’t staying committed when bad or average teams come into the building. Playing hard against good teams just won’t cut it:
“We turned the basketball over, gave up second chance opportunities, poor execution, short shot clock, gave up high percentage looks and didn’t get the 50-50 basketballs. Just a bad night and a disappointing loss.”
Washington went into the final quarter with just a one-point advantage. But when Bradley Beal scored nine points in the first three minutes of the quarter, the Warriors were forced to take a timeout to regroup.
Jordan Crawford came out of the timeout fighting, scoring five consecutive points. With a fast break three from Klay Thompson, the Warriors took the lead 79-77.
Tied 85-85, with just 1:28 left, John Wall hit a deep trey for what would be the final points of the contest as the Warriors failed to make a play at the horn.
Andre Iguodala, who turned 30 Tuesday, said the Warriors are lacking intensity and relying too much on the home court:
“We’re kind of spoiled with our fans in the way they come out and they’re into it every night. We try to just use their intensity but we’ve got to draw from ourselves. Teams are coming in here and they’re not sleeping on us anymore.”
The game started bad and ended worse for Golden State as Thompson missed his first three shots, all from three-point range. Then the Warriors had a stretch where they missed seven consecutive shots in the opening minutes of the game.
Harrison Barnes, who has struggled lately, snapped the scoreless stretch hitting a corner three, and the Warriors crawled back within two after the first quarter.
The second quarter saw the Warriors backup unit spring to life as Barnes assisted back-to-back dunks to Draymond Green and Marreese Speights.
Then, on the following possession, Speights grabbed a defensive rebound headed down the floor and hit a three to take a 40-35 lead with just over six minutes left in the half.
The Warriors lead slipped away early in the third frame with eight quick points from Beal. But in the waning minutes of the quarter, Golden State turned a 12-0 run into a four-point lead with 1:26 on the clock.
Beal continued to have his way opening the fourth quarter with a 6-0 run of his own, and after the game-winning three from Wall, the Wizards walked away with the victory.
After scoring just two points in the first half Beal had 18 of the Wizards’ final 43 points. Head coach Randy Wittman said Beal led the team and showed his growth by not letting his early performance get him down:
“He had about as bad a first half as you can have … He just stayed with it and he’s capable of obviously getting hot, and you can’t get hot if you feel sorry for yourself.”
The Warriors, now 27-19 overall, finish their five-game homestand Thursday against the Clippers (32-15).
The Wizards improved to 12-11 on the road this season, winning nine of their last 12 away from home. … The Warriors have lost four of their last five at Oracle Arena, and since winning 10 consecutive games the Warriors have lost six of their last nine games. … The Warriors were held below 90 points for the fifth time this season (1-4 in those games) and their 85 points were the second fewest they’ve ever scored against the Wizards. … Marreese Speights grabbed a season-high-tying nine rebounds to go with seven points in 14 minutes off the bench. … Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 20 points, his ninth 20-point game of the season. … Andre Iguodala failed to reach double digits for the first time when he plays on his birthday.