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Steph Curry exits due to leg injury, Warriors defeat Mavericks anyway, 119-113


PhilBoxing.com




The Warriors had to dig deep in their armamentarium as they held on to beat the visiting Mavericks on Saturday night, 119-113.

Golden State started with a dazzling display of ball movement, and outscored the Mavericks 40-23 in the first, 33-25 in the second quarter, and led by 15 points (73-58) at halftime.

At the 2:01 mark of the third quarter, with the Warriors ahead by 20 points, a driving Dallas Mavericks' McKinley Wright IV (23) banged knees in the paint with an awaiting Curry who received the brunt of the accidental collision.



Curry was called for the foul, sending Wright IV to the free throw line. Curry then hobbled towards the bench where he was checked by Rick Celebrini, the team’s vice president of player health and performance, who later escorted him towards the locker room.

Curry did not return for the fourth quarter after suffering a lower left leg injury. X-rays did not reveal anything too obvious, but an MRI is definitely in order.

Said Coach Steve Kerr: “Anytime a guy’s gonna get an MRI, there’s a concern level. We’ll just have to wait and see the results…He plays hard and he’s all over the floor, and this has happened many, many times over the years, so fingers crossed that he’s OK.”

Before his early departure from Saturday’s game, Curry was on pace for another splash party and led with 21 points (7-of 11 FG and 2-of-6 3-PT), 6 rebounds, and 7 assists which inspired his teammates to close the show.

However, in the fourth quarter, Dallas trimmed Golden State’s 20-point lead to 5 points, after going on a 13-0 run.

As a team, Golden State made 45-of-82 baskets (54.9% FG), sank 24-of-35 treys (40% 3-PT), had more assists (33 to 22), had more blocks (6 to 1), had more fast break points (12 to 1), controlled the paint (56 to 46 points), were a tad more aggressive committing more fouls (24 to 18), and led wire-to-wire by as much 23 points.

Draymond Green stuffed his stat sheets with 17 points, 9 rebounds, and 9 assists.

Fellow starters Klay Thompson added 14, Kevin Looney 10, Andrew Wiggins 9 points.

Off the bench, Jamychal Green scored 14, Jonathan Kuminga added 13 to become the youngest Warrior to score more than 1,000 points. Ty Jerome chipped in 3 and the erratic Jordan Poole was quiet with 5 points.

For the first half of the season, the Warriors starting five would usually produce and the bench failed, which spurred Coach Kerr to rotate Draymond and Poole on and off the bench, with some success.

More recently, as in the past 10 or so games, the veterans have been the ones dropping the ball, evident in losses where they were leading in double-digits; for example, the 134-117 loss to Denver (Feb. 2) and 129-114 OT loss to Minnesota (Feb. 1), just 2 back-to-back games back come to mind.

On Saturday night against the Mavericks, whom they faced in last year’s Western Conference Finals, the Warriors starters collectively scored 71, and the bench squad contributed 48 points and notched an important win.



By contrast, Dallas made 39-of-85 baskets (45.9% FG), sank 14-of-40 treys (35% 3-PT), had more steals (9 to 6), had more points off turnovers (19 to 11).

Spencer Dinwiddie led with 25, followed by Tim Hardaway, Jr. with 22, Dorian Finney-Smith 18, Josh Green 12 points.

Off the Mavs bench, Jaden Hardy led with 11 and Theo Pinson, A.J. Lawson, and JaVale Green chipped in 5 points each.

The depleted Mavs were without star Luca Doncic (right heel contusion), Maxi Kleber (right hamstring tear), Davis Bertans (left calf strain), and Christian Wood (left thumb fracture).



Of interest at the post game press conference, Donte DiVincenzo summed it up best when he metaphorically implied that the Warriors young guns, like himself, should step-up more often to help the veterans whom he likened to high-quality used cars with high mileage.



Upcoming:

Golden State Warriors (27-26): Host OKC Thunder (25-27) on Monday, February 6, 2023.

Dallas Mavericks (28-26): Visit Utah Jazz (27-27) on Monday, February 6, 2023.

Note of Appreciation:

Special thanks to Messrs. Raymond Ridder, Brett Winkler, Cole Lawrence, Darryl Arata, and the Warriors staff for their kind assistance and statistics.

Post-game photo-collage taken by this aspiring writer.The banner photos and video link are courtesy of the NBA and brought to you by PhilBoxing.com.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Emmanuel Rivera, RRT.


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