Warriors

Warriors takeaways: What we learned from brutal 115-111 loss to Suns

Warriors takeaways: What we learned from brutal 115-111 loss to Suns

OAKLAND -- Though the Warriors repeatedly have vowed to up their level of engagement down the stretch, they showed little evidence of change Sunday night against the lowly Phoenix Suns. 

The Warriors allowed the Suns to rally for a 115-111 win, marking the first time in nearly five years that Phoenix beat Golden State in a game. The Suns outshot, outrebounded and, in most stretches, outplayed the back-to-back defending NBA champs.

In a game the Warriors claimed they wanted, their actions did not back it up. Here are the takeaways from their disappointing loss at Oracle Arena.

KD goes down, and the Suns go on a run 

Kevin Durant suffered a right ankle contusion in the fourth quarter and did not return. Following Durant's absence, the Suns seized control of the game, outscoring the Warriors 20-16 over the last five minutes. 

Devin Booker scored 37 points, including two free throws with 17.7 seconds left to ice the game. 

Sunday's defeat marks the second loss in the last three games for the Warriors, and the first time the Suns have beaten the Warriors since Nov. 18, 2014.  

Another good start

For the second consecutive game, the Warriors had a strong start, jumping to a 27-11 lead in the first quarter. 

Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant combined for 20 of the Dubs' 29 first-quarter points. Aiding the offensive attack was the Warriors' defense, which forced the Suns into five first-quarter turnovers. 

Such starts would be welcomed for the champs, who have struggled to stay engaged, except for ...

Another bad second quarter

The Warriors were outscored 40-28 in the second quarter, allowing the Suns to shoot 71.4 percent, as they erased a 16-point deficit. 

Golden State's second-quarter performance was a carbon copy of the showing in Friday's win over the Denver Nuggets, when the Warriors let a 19-point lead go to waste before halftime.

Sunday's performance proved the Warriors still have a long way to go to find the level of consistency they are searching for before the NBA playoffs start.

Why Mike Brown feels like he played role in Klay Thompson's huge game

Why Mike Brown feels like he played role in Klay Thompson's huge game

Programming note: Watch the pregame edition of Warriors Outsiders on Wednesday night at 6, streaming live on the MyTeams app.

Klay Thompson finally had a big game on Sunday.

After scoring just 12, 17 and 12 points in the first three games against the Clippers, the five-time All-Star registered 32 points in Game 4.

Did he do anything different on Friday or Saturday in Los Angeles that contributed to his breakout performance?

“I did a couple things ... I told Jonas (Jerebko) yesterday when we went to the beach and played some volleyball, I'm like, 'Yo I’m just gonna go jump in the ocean. I know that will reset my mind.’ And it worked," Klay told reporters after the Warriors' 113-105 win. "I don't know if I'm gonna jump (in) up north, because it's freezing.

"But it's something I'll definitely contemplate if I don't shoot the ball the rest of the year."

On Monday morning, Golden State assistant coach Mike Brown explained how he could have been there with Klay and Jerebko but ultimately declined the invitation.

“I actually took an Uber after that practice back to the hotel with Klay and Jonas and they were both going to the beach together,” Brown said on 95.7 The Game. “They asked me if I wanted to go and at first I said, ‘Yes.’

“But then I realized my swell figure -- it wouldn’t quite look as nice as theirs. So, I was like, ‘You know what? How about y’all go to the beach by yourselves and I'll go another time with y’all, after I get in that gym a little bit.'

"I didn't go with them, but I feel like I'm part of this 32-point performance because Klay did say he needed some tunes while he was at the beach. And so I said, 'OK, Klay. Here, you can use my Beats Pill.' So I let him use my Beats Pill.

"He tried to keep it but I confronted him when we got off the plane last night and he knew what to do as a young man (against) my grown man strength."

[RELATEDBogut gives interesting response to Embiid's 3-1 Dubs joke]

There are so many amazing components to this tale that it's hard to pick a favorite.

The weather is going to be beautiful in the Bay Area the next couple of days, so hopefully we learn about another legendary Klay story after Game 5 on Wednesday night.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram

Andrew Bogut's interesting response to Joel Embiid's 3-1 Warriors joke

Andrew Bogut's interesting response to Joel Embiid's 3-1 Warriors joke

Programming note: Watch the pregame edition of Warriors Outsiders on Wednesday night at 6, streaming live on the MyTeams app.

On Saturday, 76ers center Joel Embiid racked up 31 points, 16 rebounds, seven assists, six blocks and two steals in Philly's Game 4 win at the Nets.

After the victory, he delivered a fantastic joke while speaking to the media at the podium:

The Warriors blew a 3-1 lead in the 2016 NBA Finals and the basketball world will clearly never forget.

Andrew Bogut -- who hurt his knee in Game 5 of that infamous series and missed Games 6 and 7 -- responded to Embiid in a column he wrote for Yahoo Sport Australia:

Joel Embiid saying the 76ers don’t want to do what we did in the 2016 Finals is just Joel being Joel – he’s a bit of a larrikin.

But they have to get to a Finals series first before they can even think about doing that.

It’s been a funny talking point for a lot of people in the league.

But we haven’t taken any notice of it and it’s not something that’s been mentioned in the locker room.

You are probably asking yourself what "larrikin" means.

The definition, according to the Oxford Modern Australian Dictionary: "A mischievous young person, an uncultivated, rowdy but good hearted person", or "a person who acts with apparent disregard for social or political conventions."

[RELATED: Watch Draymond dominate Clips with incredible rim protection]

Turn up the heat!

Embiid talks a lot of trash, is a must-follow on social media and is all about having fun.


At this point, the world kind of deserves a Warriors-76ers matchup in the NBA Finals so we can watch Bogut and Embiid battle it out.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram