NBC Sports

What we learned in Warriors' brutal road loss to Spurs

NBC Sports
Steph Curry, Warriors

It’s always risky to dance with danger on a floor that historically has treated you with cruelty. The Warriors did it anyway Monday night, and they were tortured once more. 

They walked out of AT&T Center in San Antonio with a 105-100 loss that they invited upon themselves.

Stephen Curry scored a game-high 32 points, Kelly Oubre Jr. put in 24 and Draymond Green came within three points of posting his 25th career triple-double. Green tried to draw a late foul with eight seconds left but ended up taking an ill-advised 3-pointer from near the logo.

The Warriors had lost 40 of the previous 43 games they played in San Antonio. It’s now 41 of the last 44.

And this one should irritate them until at least the next time they take the court. Which fortunately, for them, is Tuesday night.

Here are three takeaways from a rough night in Texas:

Give it away

The Warriors spent the first half executing the essentials required to spank the Spurs on their home floor. They shot better (53.5 percent to 38.9), shot more frequently and better from deep (47.4 percent to 38.5), passed better (18 assists to 13) and even grabbed more rebounds (24 to 22). They even held leading scorer DeMar DeRozan to two field goals.

That’s how the Warriors led by as much as 14 points and several times appeared to be moving toward blowout territory.

One factor got in the way and kept things competitive: Turnovers. So many turnovers.

The Warriors committed 12 giveaways in the first half, giving San Antonio 12 points, and totaled 20 for the game. The Spurs turned those gifts into 17 points. That’s how they stayed close enough to eventually win.

 

The KO Experience

On and on it rocks and rolls, delivering the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. The Kelly Oubre Jr. Experience this season has been the personification of gorgeous and grotesque in one package.

On this night, Oubre delivered the former. He started wonderfully, with 12 points and two rebounds in his first 10 minutes and ended up with a team-high 18 at the half. His 24 points came on 9-of-16 shooting, including 4-of-8 from distance.

It’s getting to be a regular occurrence, Oubre making his way into these reviews, and that’s because he so rarely is invisible or irrelevant. You can always count on him for big plays, but the enduring mystery is which team will benefit.

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The good news, bad news bench

For much of the season, the Warriors have been able to rely on their second unit to maintain leads and, in several cases, expand them. 

They did both in this game.

The Warriors opened the second quarter with a nine-point lead (36-27) and the second unit pushed it to 14 in less than four minutes. They turned it over to the starters, who gave back nine of those points and the Warriors took a 59-54 halftime lead.

Different tale the fourth quarter, which the Warriors opened with an 80-78 lead. The Spurs went on a 15-3 run to go up 10 with 7:05 to play.

The Warriors crept closer, getting within one on a Curry 3-ball with 9.2 seconds to play, but never had another lead.

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