Thompson provides the early magic in win over Orlando

Thompson provides the early magic in win over Orlando

OAKLAND -- Maybe it’s the comforts of home, whether it’s hangout out with his pet Rocco or pulling into the familiar surroundings of Oracle Arena, but Klay Thompson is holding up his end of his promise.

The sixth-year guard is back to punishing opposing defenses, as he consistently vowed would happen during what amounted to a three-game cold spell.

“Klay had it rolling early,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said after Thompson provided the offensive spark Tuesday night that led to a 122-92 mauling of the Magic.

Thompson brought the fire, and he brought it early, scorching Orlando for 21 points in the first 10 minutes. It was his third 20-point quarter this season, the first two coming in his 60-point game against the Pacers on Dec. 5.

Thompson made his first shot, missed his second and then made the next seven in a row. He made his first five 3-pointers.

“It definitely helps when you make four or five in a row,” Thompson said. “You feel like every shot is going to go in. And tonight was one of those nights where I was just in a great rhythm from the jump.”

Thompson’s hot start generated a momentum that lasted the entire night. He stayed aggressive but tailed off later, missing eight of his last 11 shots, but he had done enough damage with his early work.

You can definitely see it in his body language,” Draymond Green said, “because he’s definitely going to chase that next one. Klay definitely shows you.

“The thing was, they were all great shots. Guys continued to find him. He continued to move without the basketball . . . he gave you lanes to get him the ball, and once you got it to him he was knocking them down. Then, all of a sudden, he started taking them off the dribble and knocking tough shots down.”

Thompson totaled 29 points, most of them in transition. The Warriors’ defense forced 21 turnovers, off which they scored 36 points.

“We were able to get out in transition, just from our stops,” Thompson said. “And when Draymond and Steph (Curry) are pushing the break, usually something great happens. And tonight was one of those nights where if you get a few good looks early, you can take a couple tough ones and they went in.”

Thompson after the three-game slump during which he was 8-of-33 from deep, he has made 13 of his last 24.

“I want to carry this momentum into Saturday and build up some wins here, especially at home,” he said.

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.