NBC Sports

What we learned in Warriors' crushing road loss to Magic

NBC Sports

The Warriors once again fell behind early and spent much of the night trailing. And once again, they went on a rampage they seem ready to patent.

It wasn’t enough.

Despite a searing third quarter, during which they outscored the Magic by 14 points, the Warriors gave it back late and took a 124-120 loss Friday night at Amway Center in Orlando.

Stephen Curry, Kelly Oubre Jr. and Andrew Wiggins combined to score 71 points, but the Warriors (16-14) failed yet again to register their first three-game win streak this season.

Here are three takeaways from a night that will haunt them:

Wings of Jayhawk fuel third-quarter magic

Oubre and Wiggins, both of whom attended the University of Kansas, were at the center of third-quarter surge that erased a 17-point deficit and gave the Warriors a one-point lead entering the fourth.

Oubre scored 13 points in the quarter on 6-of-10 shooting, including 1-of-3 from distance. He was aggressive at both ends, and that had a clear impact on his teammates. He finished with 26 points, scoring in double figures for the 11th consecutive game. 

Wiggins was even more efficient, scoring 12 points on 5-of-5 shooting, while also recording a couple assists in the quarter. He totaled 16 points and has reached double figures in all 30 games this season.

The Warriors scored 43 points in the quarter – their most productive of the season – and appeared to take command before fading down the stretch.

Foot off the gas?

The Warriors took a one-point lead into the fourth quarter, and the second unit increased the margin to 13 (106-93) on a three-point play by Brad Wanamaker with 8:50 remaining.

 

The Magic, however, did not roll over. To the contrary, they muscled up.

Orlando quickly got back within four (108-104, 6:29 left), and maintained the pressure as the Warriors went cold. The Magic went on a 15-2 run and closed the game with an 18-8 run that sent Golden State into the locker room with a loss.

The Warriors during the final five minutes shot 3-of-10 from the field – including their last three shots – while committing a pair of turnovers.

Clobbered on the glass, again

The Warriors were bit once again by the challenge that won’t go away. Rebounding.

The Magic had a substantial size advantage and exploited it early, crashing the offensive glass to score six of their first eight points on second-chance 3-pointers. They outrebounded Golden State 29-18 in the first half, while outscoring them 12-0 in second-chance points.

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For the game, the Warriors were outrebounded 51-45 and scored only four second-chance points, to 17 for Orlando.

The Warriors have been outrebounded in 21 of their 30 games – and by double figures in eight/nine of those games. Size is an issue, and the arc of this season suggests it will remain so even after 7-foot James Wiseman and 6-foot-9 Kevon Looney return next week.

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