Warriors takeaways: What we learned in 122-105 blowout loss to Heat

Warriors takeaways: What we learned in 122-105 blowout loss to Heat

MIAMI -- In a season that's coming with an abundance of lessons, the Warriors got schooled once again Friday in a 122-105 loss to the Miami Heat. 

Miami left no doubt to start, taking a 20-point first-quarter lead on the way to its seventh straight home win. 

Despite a subpar night from Jimmy Butler, the Heat shot over 50 percent from the field and 3-point range, carving up the Warriors for much of the night. 

Friday's loss was the first of the Warriors' five-game road trip, offering a glimpse of what the Warriors shouldn't do going forward. Here are three takeaways. 

Slow start

The undermanned Warriors did something they can ill afford to do much this season, trailing early against a superior team. On Friday, the succumbed to a familiar habit, as Miami outscored Golden State 41-21 in the first quarter. 

The Heat shot 76 percent through 12 minutes, making 16 of their first 21 shots. Guard Duncan Robinson scored 12 of his 17 points in the quarter, hitting four of the Heat's six 3-pointers and helping the home team build a big lead. 

As one of the worst teams in the league, the Warriors' young core has a lot of lessons to learn. Chief among them is the ability to stifle a team from the start. Friday was yet another example of Golden State's learning curve. 

Glenn Robinson struggles

Four days after scoring a career-high 25 points, Robinson failed to replicate even a fraction of that output Friday evening. In 29 minutes, he failed to make each of his 10 attempts in a performance he'd like to forget. 

Robinson has begun revitalizing his career in his first two months with the Warriors, averaging 11.9 points on 47 percent shooting from the field entering Friday. Nights like Friday are bound to happen, even for the game's greatest shooters.

However, Robinson's biggest test will come two days from now in Orlando, which comes with a chance to bounce back. 

[RELATED: Watch Steph perfectly recall random career highlights]

Jordan Poole bounces back

Following a tough stretch to start the season, the rookie showed life Friday in South Beach. Poole finished with 20 points, including five 3-pointers in 28 minutes

The Michigan product got going in the second quarter, scoring 11 points and draining three shots from beyond the arc.  

Poole has struggled with his shot for much of the season, shooting just 27 percent from the field entering Friday. Nonetheless, he has outwardly shown confidence. When asked about his slump earlier this month, he brushed away any notion he'd curtail his aggressiveness.

"Doing that got me here," Poole said in Houston. "Why would I change?"

With more opportunities ahead, he'll have to keep the same approach.

Steph Curry shares his thoughts on Allen Iverson's 'top five' comment

Steph Curry shares his thoughts on Allen Iverson's 'top five' comment

At NBA All-Star weekend last year, Allen Iverson told Steph Curry that he's in his "top five all day long."

Since then, Iverson repeatedly has said that the Warriors' superstar would be his point guard if he was assembling an all-time starting five.

"You know what's funny -- I have that saved on my phone," Curry told Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes on the latest episode of "All the Smoke" on Showtime (the full show will air this Thursday). "It's crazy. It's crazy, right?

"I ain't never had a big head. That dude who I picked up a lot of game and inspiration from -- he's now looking at my game ...

"Some OGs, they don't want to relinquish the praise. Same way we respect the OGs, we want it both ways. So when you do hear that, that means something."

As Steph said after Game 1 of the 2017 NBA Finals: "Low-key, I've always wanted to be like Allen Iverson."

It must be killing the three-time NBA champion to be sidelined with the broken left hand, especially on nights like Monday in Portland when he sat on the Warriors' bench while Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard dropped 61 points in an overtime win over the Dubs.

[RELATED: What names did Charles Barkley just call Steph and Klay?]

Now is the perfect time to remind everybody that the two-time NBA MVP averaged 36.5 points, 8.3 rebounds and 7.3 assists against the Blazers in the 2019 Western Conference Finals, all while shooting 47 percent overall and nearly 43 percent from deep.

It's safe to assume that Iverson doesn't forget about that, and neither should you.

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Why comparing Warriors' Eric Paschall to Draymond Green should stop


Why comparing Warriors' Eric Paschall to Draymond Green should stop

Editor's note: Grant Liffmann (@grantliffmann) is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders, which airs on NBC Sports Bay Area 60 minutes after every game. Each week, Grant will drop his Outsider Observation on the state of the Dubs.

The offseason comparisons between Warriors rookie Eric Paschall and star forward Draymond Green made sense. Both were highly successful four-year college basketball players from big-time programs that were taken in the second round of the NBA draft due to concerns of their overall athleticism and their inability to fit in to a traditional position.

Both players supposedly were too undersized to play the power forward position in the NBA, but also not quick or polished enough to be small forwards. Even their physiques had similar builds. So with all of that, comparing the two players before the season began was logical.

But it is not anymore.

The most important caveat is that Green is a three-time All-Star, a Defensive Player of the Year, three-time NBA champion and at one point, was widely considered a top-20 player in the league. Conversely, Paschall is a rookie who has not had a chance to accomplish an NBA resume yet.

Comparing both players seems silly already, and it is unfair to Paschall for creating expectations for that type of success. And yet if the side-by-side comparison is simply regarding how they play, Paschall and Green are completely different in their skillsets and approach to the game. 

On the defensive end, Draymond is one of the best help-side defenders in the modern NBA. He plays a "free safety" type role, using his unique ability to read the opponent's every move while also having the quickness and strength to counter them. Despite being just 6-foot-6, Green is elite at guarding big men in the NBA, while also having the unique ability to defend every position on the court.

Paschall, on the other hand, still is learning to play defense at the NBA level, and even with that, has shown to be more of a one-on-one defender so far. While he is more accustomed to guarding the power forward position, he has had impressive defensive moments defending "straight up" against wings, sliding his feet and using his strength to force them into tough shots.

It will take time for Paschall to develop from a good defender into the great one that many think he is capable of becoming. Regardless, his current projection does not have him playing the same defensive style as Green.

On offense, the contrast between the two is even greater. Green became one of the most unique offensive threats in the game as a great playmaker in transition and out of the pick-and-roll. His ability to push the ball full speed in the fast break and expose slow opposing big men helped pave the way for the Warriors' "Death Lineup" that revolutionized small-ball.

At his peak, Green was a 39 percent 3-point shooter, but scored most of his points on the break attacking the hoop. His elite passing ability helped him rack up assists, where he could spread the ball around to the greatest shooters of all-time surrounding him. 

[RELATED: Why Dubs are in power position with Burks at trade deadline]

While Paschall has shown glimpses of impressive playmaking talent, his real bread and butter so far in the NBA has been dominating opponents one-on-one. He is remarkably explosive jumping off two feet, and he is able to combine his great strength with unique finesse when finishing over defenders at the rim. His shooting is very inconsistent from deep, just like Draymond, but he still is refining a mid-range pull-up that keeps defenders honest.

For being only a few months into this NBA career, Paschall already has become a "throw the ball to him and clear out of the way" type talent on offense. While Paschall might never be the type of offensive quarterback like Green, he already is on his way to becoming a more dynamic scoring threat.

Draymond will continue to take Paschall under his wing and teach him the nuances of the game. But when all is said and done, the two Warriors will complement each other very nicely on the court with their own personal skills and differentiated abilities, rather than repetitive and possibly gratuitous similarities.