Warriors flat in Monta's return, fall 120-98


Warriors flat in Monta's return, fall 120-98

Bucks 120, Warriors 95Player of the game: Luc Mbah a Moute, making only his 15th start of the season, had his way with the Warriors on the interior. Mbah a Moute scored a career-high 22 points on 10-for-14 shooting to go along with 17 rebounds.For the game, the Bucks outrebounded the Warriors 54-35.They destroyed us, Warriors coach Mark Jackson. They treated us like we were their little brothers. They dominated the paint, scored 120 points. You talk about 33 assists and they manhandled us on the boards. Any way you look to define being thoroughly outplayed and physically beaten up, we made a case for.
Key stretch: The game was won and lost late in the first quarter. With the Bucks holding an 18-12 run, they proceeded to finish the period on a 13-0 run to take a 19-point lead after a period. The Warriors made a marginal run in the second quarter, but the outcome was never in doubt.Ellis honored: Monta Ellis got a standing ovation when he was introduced with the Bucks starters. He was cheered throughout the game and was honored with a video tribute at the first timeout.Jackson took issue with the notion that his team might have been caught up in Ellis return.The mindset should be Hello. Good to see you. Congratulations. Now hit the deck and lets go. Im going to go at you Jackson said. Obviously that wasnt the mindset. We took all the punches and threw none. We didnt make the team we were playing against feel us and it was an embarrassing effort.Ellis under control: Former Warriors Monta Ellis played 38 minutes and shot just 6-for-15 from the field. But he was 6-for-6 from the line and was content to allow his teammates to contribute.Ekpe Udoh, who was also traded in the deal, went scoreless in 19 minutes but had four rebounds and a block.Awful start: Perhaps it was the Monta Ellis hangover, but the Warriors got off to a terrible start against the Bucks. The Warriors shot 25 percent in the first quarter and fell behind 31-12.Ellis played the entire first quarter and was selective with his shot selection. Ellis went 2-for-5 in the period from the field, but got to the line four times and converted all four.Bucks coach Scott Skiles had said before the game that if he sensed Ellis was overly excited or not playing his game that he might remove Ellis early and then bring him back minutes later.There was no need for Skiles to do that.Bogut introduced: Andrew Bogut was introduced to the media on Friday night before the game, and he said hes getting healthy and that hes making progress with his broken left ankle.Elbow is fine, Bogut said of last seasons elbow injury. I had a scope at the end of the season. I had played through a lot of pain, but I havent had any issues since. I have a scan in two weeks and it will let us know if that bone has settled down and fallen back into place. Its a delicate situation because if you come back too early from an injury, you might have to have another surgery. Well be real careful with it.

Draymond defends Bell's garbage time alley-oop off backboard to himself

Draymond defends Bell's garbage time alley-oop off backboard to himself

With just under three minutes to go and the Warriors leading by 25 points, Steve Kerr put the end of the bench into the game.

Somehow, with the game in control, rookie Jordan Bell found a way to produce the highlight of the night.

After Bell got a piece of Dwight Powell's shot, JaVale McGee batted the ball ahead. With no one in front of him, the rookie tossed the ball off the backboard and threw down a dunk. The sequence left his Warriors teammates flabergasted. But Bell may have broken an unwritten rule about showboating in a blowout game.

After the game, Draymond Green was not having it with possible criticism of Bell.

"Listen man, when you get on the basketball floor, I don't care if you get out there with two minutes to go up 25 or with two minutes to go down 25, somebody is evaluating you. So you gotta play the game just like it's tied up or if you're up four or if you're down four. You gotta play the game the same way. Somebody is evaluating you. So if you want to throw it off the backboard, feel free and dunk the ball. He got an And One. It was a great play. So, I got no message for him. Do what you do. Play basketball. That's what he did. I don't get all up into the whole 'Ah man, they're winning by this much, that's bad.' Says who? Dunk the ball. What's the difference between if he threw it off the backboard and dunked it as opposed to grabbing it and dunking it? It's a dunk," Green told reporters in Dallas after the Warriors' 133-130 win.

Green was then asked what he thought of the play, regardless of game situation.

"Great play. Great play. Amazing. Did you see it? It was dope. He got an And One too. He missed the free throw though. We gotta talk about that. That's my message for him. Make the free throw," Green said.

Kerr reportedly apologized to Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle after the game. Green commented on that.

"Steve's the coach. I'm not. That's not my problem," Green said.

Draymond wasn't the only member of the Green family defending Bell. His mom, Mary Babers-Green was on Twitter defending the rookie.


Why Steph Curry can never, ever chuck his mouthpiece again

Why Steph Curry can never, ever chuck his mouthpiece again

Stephen Curry knows he asked for this one. Begged for it. Wanted it so bad he not only ripped his mouthpiece out of his face but also wound up and fired it in the direction of a game official.

He has to be, and likely is, pleased that the NBA wanted nothing more than a $50,000 bite out of his newly fortified paycheck.

“It was a dumb thing to do. Stupid,” he said after shootaround Monday morning. “Learn from it and try to move on and be better.”

It was not nearly enough for the league that Curry apologized immediately after the mouthpiece-tossing incident that got him tossed in the fourth quarter of the Warriors’ 111-101 loss to the Grizzlies on Saturday. Apologies don’t carry much weight in these matters and they are entirely weightless when it’s a second offense.

And that’s what this was, as you may recall Curry flinging his mouthpiece late in Game 6 of the 2016 NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. He was tossed from that game, too.

Of more importance, and what Curry has to take away from this is that he can’t afford another offense. Ever. Though he surely can afford it monetarily, it would rob the Warriors of their offensive catalyst.

Throwing a mouthpiece once is a forgivable mistake. Doing it twice is a relapse that some may forgive while others definitely will not. Doing it three or more times falls into the selfish category, even if selfishness is not a characteristic fairly applied to the two-time MVP.

It’s conceivable that no one in the NBA gets pushed and grabbed and knocked around as much, without a whistle, as does Curry. Part of this is on him, for not being better at selling calls. Part of it is on officials who typically use a different standard for him than those usually set for MVP-caliber players.

Through it all, and it has gone on for years, Curry rarely says a peep. He plays on, simmering, but staying on task.

“I think people on the outside automatically think that these guys can control everything and be robots and score 35 and be perfectly composed,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Monday morning. “But they’re all human beings, just like the rest of us. There’s going to be times where you lose your mind. There’s going to be times where you get angry and times where you’re in perfect mental and you’re playing at a high level and everything is under control.

But nobody can keep that level 100 percent of the time.”

Curry’s actions Saturday in Memphis were only partly the result of the officiating. The Warriors were losing, again. Curry was committing silly fouls, again. It was a buildup of unfavorable events and he lost it.

“We were playing terrible,” Curry said Monday morning. “I was frustrated because I was fouling. I thought I got fouled on the last play. The reaction was definitely a little over the top.

“Stuff happens. I’m going to try to continue to be myself and show some fire, but do it in a way that doesn’t take away from the team and misrepresent who I am.”

Curry said Monday that he didn’t bother to review his actions because he knew how unbecoming they were. He also expressed regret about lashing out. There was no need to brace for the fine he knew was coming.

Next time, though it won’t be a fine that will take a fraction of his check. Next time, it’ll be a suspension that will take away a piece of the Warriors.