Rewind: McCaw 'took over,' showed explosiveness in OT win over Nuggets

Rewind: McCaw 'took over,' showed explosiveness in OT win over Nuggets

We’re beginning to see why Warriors coach Steve Kerr said prior to training camp that he would be comfortable giving playing time to rookie wing Patrick McCaw.

The UNLV’s latest preseason audition was perhaps his most impressive, scoring 18 points in 27 minutes Friday night to lead the Warriors to a comeback that ended with a 129-128 overtime win over the Nuggets at Pepsi Center in Denver.

After draining a 3-pointer to tie the game at 112-112 with 1.1 seconds remaining in regulation, McCaw came back to hit a floater to win the game at the buzzer in OT.

“I don’t know how many games in my life where a guy hits a game-tying 3 in regulation and then a game-winner at the buzzer,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr told reporters in Denver. “That doesn’t happen.

“This guy is a rookie second-round pick. There’s something about him. He can play, and we’re excited about him.”

McCaw was 6-of-10 from the floor, including 4-of-6 from beyond the arc. The 6-foot-7 guard/forward rounded out his game with six rebounds, two assists and a steal.

Nothing, however, was more impressive than his composure in the clutch. It’s one thing to take a 3-pointer out of a scramble to tie the game, quite another to take the ball down by a point and drop in a game-winner at the buzzer.

“The play was called for me to get open and get the ball,” McCaw said. “Coach gave us a great play, and we executed it properly.”

Though McCaw was the clear MVP of the game, the Warriors also got a lift from second-year forward Kevon Looney, who grabbed a team-high-tying nine rebounds to help the reserves overcome a 12-point deficit in the final eight minutes of regulation.

“Looney was really good tonight,” Kerr said. “He played 14 straight minutes, which may not sound like much but this is a guy who has had two hip surgeries and didn’t play much at all last year. With his conditioning, he’s kind of made a breakthrough.”

Yet this night belonged to McCaw, scored 10 of the team’s 15 points over the final 4:07 of OT and continues to draw rave reviews from coaches and teammates.

“We’ve been most impressed with his intelligence and his feel for the game,” Kerr said. “I didn’t know he was that explosive. He can make 3s, but he sort of took over with his shooting and his rebounding. That ‘s the first time we’ve seen that kind of explosiveness out of him. That was impressive.”


Stephen Curry scored a game-high 22 points and took down nine rebounds, tying Looney. More important, Curry, coming off an illness that forced him to miss two practices, played 27 minutes, tying McCaw for the team high.

The Warriors were beaten on the glass (60-52), but managed to curtail their turnovers, committing only 16, the lowest through four preseason games.

Klay Thompson scored 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting, while also ringing up three assists, his first of the preseason.

Cook gives injured Warriors 'huge boost' in anomalous loss


Cook gives injured Warriors 'huge boost' in anomalous loss

OAKLAND -- If Quinn Cook plays at anything close to the level he performed Friday night against the Kings, the Warriors should avoid any catastrophic stumbling in the absence of their top three scorers.

They stumbled plenty in a 98-93 loss to Sacramento, but not because of Cook. The two-way player who has spent most of the season with G-League Santa Cruz scored a team-high 25 points, shot 10-of-13 from the field and played respectable defense.

He did more than could have been reasonably expected.

“I felt like this was coming,” coach Steve Kerr said. “He was fantastic. He really lit it up and gave us a huge boost.”

The Warriors ran into problems elsewhere, shared among the usually reliable veterans who need to be particularly reliable in the absence of Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.

Usual starters Draymond Green and Zaza Pachulia combined to shoot 6-of-20.

Usual reserves Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, David West and Nick Young shot a collective 13-of-39.

In the second half, when Warriors mustered only 34 points -- a season-low for any half -- the six vets combined to take 32 shots and missed 24.

Those are atrocious numbers and they explain what went wrong in a game that was there for the taking.

They’re also an anomaly.

“We just couldn’t get anything going,” Green said. “But we got some good shots. We got ‘Dre on a couple of pull-ups in the lane, I got a couple open shots, Nick got a couple open shots, Zaza got a couple open ones. D-West had one pop in and out. (Kevon Looney) had two pop in and out.

“We just got cold. But hopefully those shots will fall tomorrow.”

West, returning after missing four games with a cyst on his right arm, was 1-of-6 from the field. He came into this game as a 60.8-percent shooter this season.

Igoudala was 4-of-10; he shot 70 percent over the previous 10 games. Young was 5-of-15, well below his 44-percent shooting this season. Livingston’s 3-of-8 shooting is uncharacteristic of someone shooting at least 50 percent for four years running.

If history is any indication, Green (5-of-14) and Pachulia (1-of-6) are not going continue to miss at the rate they did in this game, the first this season in which the Warriors were without all three of their top scorers.

If history is any indication, the Warriors can’t be counted on to score 34 points on 27.3-percent shooting in the second half of a game.

“I loved how our guys battled,” Kerr said. “They really competed well and made some big plays. We just couldn’t get the ball to go down quite enough in the second half.”

That’s going to change, perhaps as soon as Saturday night in Phoenix, were the Suns are playing to lose.

So if Cook plays steady basketball, the Warriors will fall off and their fans won’t become a basket case while waiting for the three shooters. The Warriors surely believe that.

“He really showed up. I’ve been waiting on that Quinn,” Green said. “We needed that. It was great for him to come out and play like that. And most importantly, his shots were falling. Since he’s been playing (more often) he’s been playing well, but his shots weren’t really falling. But tonight, they fell for him.”

They won’t always fall at a rate of 77 percent. They won’t have to once his teammates drop in a few more of their own shots.

Casspi rolls ankle, leaves game vs Kings


Casspi rolls ankle, leaves game vs Kings

OAKLAND -- Omri Casspi sustained a sprained right ankle with 9:00 left in the second quarter of the Warriors-Kings game Friday night and did not return.

After dropping in a short hook shot with 9:04 left in the quarter, Casspi landed awkwardly, rolling his ankle and dropping to the floor clutching his lower leg. Down for a couple minutes, he eventually got up and limped into the locker room, accompanied by physical performance specialist Chelsea Lane.

Casspi played six minutes off the bench, producing 6 points, one assist and one rebound against his former team.

He joins Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Pat McCaw and Klay Thompson on the sideline.