San Francisco – Jordan Poole scored 29 points in the Warriors comeback win against the Portland Trail Blazers. Golden State trailed Portland by 23 points in the first half. The Warriors came out after the half and exploded on offense for the last time the Warriors won after trailing by 23-or-more points in a regular season home game was on 12/3/13 vs. Toronto (trailed by 27, won 112-103), according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Down by 23 points, Golden State came out and cut the lead to 12 points with Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole both scoring 12 points each in the third quarter. Thompson’s 3-point shot late in the third gave the Warriors their first lead of the night at 79-78. From their the team collectively outscored Portland and held them to an opponent-season low 17 third-quarter points.
Poole finished with 29 points, Thompson had 23 and Donte DiVincenzo added 21 for the night. Golden State improved to 9-2 this season when accomplishing the feat. They also improved to 18-4 when shooting at least 50% from the field. Tonight marked the Warriors 33rd game of 30-plus assists, tied with Denver for the most such-games in the NBA.
Thompson scored 23 points, his fourth consecutive 20-point game and 27th of the season. He averaged 25.5 points per game in the month of February, tied for the third-highest monthly scoring average in his career (27.0 ppg in January 2023; 25.9 ppg in January 2015; 25.5 ppg in February 2017). In February he had seven games of 20-or-more points, four 30-plus games and two 40-point efforts.
Draymond Green returned to the lineup after missing two games with a right knee contusion. Tonight marked his 20th outing of double-figure scoring this season.
Kerr’s pregame press conference
San Francisco – Warriors head coach Steve Kerr’s pregame press conference:
ON THE STATUS OF DRAYMOND GREEN:
“He just went through the walkthrough. So he’s probably going to go out and warm up, but I’m expecting him to play.”
ON IF DRAYMOND GREEN PLAYS WILL HE START OR COME OFF THE BENCH:
“We’ll start him. If he’s playing, he’s starting.”
ON HOW THE BENCH HAS PERFORMED IN THE LAST FEW WEEKS:
“I think the role players have played really well. They’ve helped keep us afloat here with the injuries and a lot of guys have really stepped up and played well. The obvious ones are Donte (DiVincenzo) coming off the bench, JK (Jonathan Kuminga) has been good now for the last couple of months, really playing his role, but seeing Patrick (Baldwin Jr.) with some minutes here that have been productive and Moses (Moody) has had some good moments for us in in the last couple weeks. So very pleased with the bench group and JaMychal (Green) too.”
ON THEIR PERIMETER DEFENSE SINCE THE ALL-STAR BREAK:
“I think it’s you know kind of hit or miss, to be honest with you. I think there are moments when we’re doing better and then we have moments where we’re allowing penetration too easily. Too many gaps in the shell. When that happens that’s when we’re picking up fouls because people are getting right to the front of the rim.”
ON KLAY THOMPSON’S ALL-AROUND GAME SINCE THE BREAK:
“It’s the fact that it’s not just the scoring, it’s the leadership and the sense of what is needed from him with the other guys out. Just talking with the younger players and you know, giving them encouragement and just being much, I think, steadier emotionally than he was early in the year when he was pressing and I think the team has felt that and responded to that.”
ON DAMIAN LILLIARD’S 71 POINTS AGAINST THE ROCKETS:
“I mean he can score from anywhere whether it’s half-court or at the rim. I think he’s probably drawing more fouls than he ever has before. I think his gamesmanship is at an all-time high. He understands how to draw fouls, how to put defenders in compromised positions, and then create the contact that’s going to get him to the foul line. So we’ve got to be really, really smart tonight. We can’t let him dictate the action and get to the line 16 times, which I think he did last time we faced him a few weeks ago so he’s a brilliant player. I was lucky enough to coach him in the Olympics and I think what I love about him, it’s not just his talent, it’s just his character in the way he leads and carries himself with the poise and you can tell it’s his team and he takes that role very seriously. He’s one of the top, very few guys in the league in terms of star/leader, I mean, he just epitomizes that.”
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