The last time these two teams met, it was Christmas day and play got physical, with both Blake Griffin and Draymond Green sent to the locker room early with ejections. A rivalry has developed between these two teams, and that makes this win all the much sweeter, as Golden State blew out Los Angeles Thursday night 111-92 thanks to a well-balanced attack that saw six different Warriors in double figures.
The Warriors (28-19) came out with a fire and passion they had previously lacked in recent home losses, something they were determined not to repeat against the Clippers (33-16). The defense was there in the first quarter, as well as a bench unit that had a bounce to it, something they’ve been lacking all year.
The Warriors lead by as many as 19 points in the second quarter, but a determined Clippers team lead by Griffin was able to close the gap to eight heading into the half.
Griffin finished with 27 points on 52% shooting, but never found himself quite comfortable in this game due to good position and defense from the Warriors. Bogut and Lee were able to continuously force him out of the paint, turning him into a jump shooter and disrupting the Clippers game plan.
The Warriors came out of halftime with a resumed focus, holding LA to only 11 points in the third quarter, and it quickly became clear that Golden State would run away with this one. Coach Mark Jackson didn’t have to look hard to find willing scorers other than Curry and Lee this game, as Bogut, Thompson, Speights, and Barnes all finished with at least 10.
I thought overall our defense was stellar, especially in the second half,” declared Mark Jackson post-game. We set the tone early, and we battled. That’s a pretty good basketball team with a lot of weapons, and this was a quality win for us.”
Getting up for the quality teams in the league hasn’t been difficult for Golden State this season, but rather bottom feeders like the Jazz, the Warriors’ next opponent in Utah Friday night.
Andrew Bogut was happy with the win tonight, but remained cautious. “This win doesn’t mean anything if we go tomorrow and don’t put in a good effort,”