Relying largely on the supporting cast this time, the Warriors on Wednesday night rolled to a second consecutive win over the Minnesota Timberwolves at Chase Center.
The 123-111 thumping featured considerable contributions from the bench, which submitted 60 points, with James Wiseman and Damion Lee (a combined 40 points) carrying most of the offensive load.
That was more than enough to offset a subpar scoring night by Stephen Curry, who finished with 16 points on 6-of-17 shooting after torching the Timberwolves with 36 on Monday.
Here are three takeaways from a victory that bumped Golden State’s record to 10-8:
Oubre goes on a spree
During a mostly disappointing first five weeks as a member of the Warriors, Kelly Oubre Jr. has sprinkled in some wonderful moments. He had a wonderful quarter in this game. Timely, too.
After committing two fouls in the first 78 seconds and going to the bench for the rest of the first quarter, Oubre returned in the second with the highest-scoring quarter of his career: 16 points – 5-of-5 from the field, 2-of-2 from deep, 4-of-4 from the line. He added three assists and two steals, supplying much of the lift in an 18-6 run that led to a 58-51 halftime lead.
This comes as Oubre’s name is being floated in trade rumors around the NBA. It also comes against a Minnesota team that, without Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell, might be the worst in the league.
Oubre, who finished with 20 points on 7-of-9 shooting, has shown what he’s capable of doing. The question now is whether he can become more consistent.
Tag-team centers were solid
The tag-team center combination of Kevon Looney starting and rookie James Wiseman coming off the bench is two games old and having an encouraging start.
Two nights after delivering an impactful 35 minutes – 15 points, nine rebounds, three blocks – the combo was even more impressive. The numbers – 27 points, 16 rebounds, four assists, two blocks – were strong, but it is more relevant that they complement each other.
Their disparate skills were on full display against the Timberwolves.
There was Wiseman, a constant lob threat relying largely on finesse and a soft shooting touch. He scored a career-high 25 points, highlighted by 3-of-3 shooting beyond the arc. He finished plus-14 in 24 minutes.
And there was Looney’s savvy, utilizing subtle tricks and advantages to thrive in grunt work. He’s a light scorer, but his picture-perfect screens, slick passes and scrap in traffic make him effective. He finished plus-9 in 12 minutes.
Turnovers and fouls still an issue
Maybe it was related to the opponent, a weak team coming into their building, but the Warriors again were sloppy in victory.
They committed 21 turnovers, leading to 24 Minnesota points. The Warriors on Monday night give out 15 turnovers, with the Timberwolves turning them into 25 points.
No less troubling is the fouls, particularly those of the silly variety. Draymond Green, Kent Bazemore, Curry and Oubre all committed two fouls in the first quarter. Again, this is an opponent that plays hard but is vastly inferior.
Oubre not only committed two fouls in the blink of an eye but also was whistled for another in the final seconds of the first half. As good as he was, he twice went to the bench prematurely due to foul trouble.
A better team will exploit this. And every team the Warriors see for a while is better than the Timberwolves.