San Francisco – The Warriors won their last matchup last week. Tonight, the Sacramento Kings gave it all they had without their star player, DeAaron Fox. But Klay Thompson’s jump shot from above the free throw line was the game winning shot to lift Golden State over the Kings 102-101.
“It’s great,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s obviously made a million big shots for us over the years. But hitting one with .2 left when you’re down, that’s a thrill for anybody. No matter how many times you’ve done it before. Really happy for Klay, he’s put in a ton of work this summer and season started out a little slow for him in camp but he’s really finding the groove, and that was obviously a big play.”
Thompson tallied 14 points, recording the 3rd game-winning shot with five seconds-or-less on the clock of his career (prev. 11/24/18 vs. SAC and 3/4/14 at IND). Golden State’s won seven-straight regular season games vs. the Kings at home (17 of the last 21 in the Bay).
“It’s big for a lot of reasons,” said Steph Curry. “For us to get over the hump and get this dub, he made another mid-ranger when the game was tied a couple minutes earlier. So for him it’s always high confidence he’s going to impact the game shooting the basketball as long as he’s taking good shots and the ball’s moving. We like the law of averages with him for sure. It was a huge shot, he seemed in rhythm and once he caught the ball, I knew what he was trying to do. Big, big, big shot for us, for him. It’s a weird game in between two road trips so our energy was kind of all over the place so for him to seal it for us was huge.”
“I didn’t have that much time, so I wanted to take a couple of hard dribbles, get to my spot and rise up,” Thompson said. “Luckily, I made a good move with confidence and knocked it down. That is what being a basketball player is all about. It is just doing things with great confidence.”
The Warriors have won four consecutive games, improving to 4-1… The last time the Warriors began a season 4-1 dates back to 2021-22. Curry scored a team-high 21 points and made four 3-pointers. He has now made at least one 3-pointer for the 249th consecutive regular season game, extending his NBA-record streak (began on 12/1/18 at DET).
Fox was out with an ankle sprain and that left Dominates Sabonis to lead all scores with 23 points and 11 rebounds. Malik Monk finished with 16 points as Sacramento gave the Warriors a good challenge tonight. Golden State made a total of 17 turnovers with Curry having 7 turnover of his own. Despite trailing by as much a 11 points the Warriors made some huge plays in the end.
Draymond Green tallied a season-high 13 points and dished out a team-high nine assists. Green also got the crowd on their feet when he hit back-to-back 3s to start the game. Jonathan Kuminga scored a season-high-tying 12 points (done three times). Kevon Looney played in his 198th consecutive regular season game, the second-longest active streak in the NBA.
He’s played in 233 consecutive games (regular season and playoffs), the longest streak by a Warrior since Antwan Jamison played in 246 consecutive games (regular season and playoffs). He grabbed a team-high nine rebounds. Dario Saric contributed a season-high 15 points off the bench. He made 3-of-5 shots from three, two shy of his career-high mark for threes made in a single game (five, done three times). Andrew Wiggins scored a season-high 14 points.
“I think when we play with force and speed, it is really hard to guard us,” said Saric. “That is why they kind of try to put the zone there to slow us down and make us think a little bit offensively. But obviously when you have that kind of second unit, one day I am going to have a good game, another day JK (Jonathan Kuminga) will have a good day, another day (Moses) Moody will have a great game, so we try to play off of each other. Try to play with good force and speed. I think it will be hard to guard us. It is still the beginning of the season so we will try to figure out the best way find the guy who is hot.”
Pregame quotes from Warriors head coach Steve Kerr and Kings head coach Mike Brown.
WARRIORS HEAD COACH STEVE KERR
ON IF THERE WAS A COMMONALITY TO THE TEAM’S OFFSEASON ACQUISITIONS:
“Well first of all, Mike (Dunleavy) has obviously been here for the last five or six years, so we already had a great relationship. He’d watched our team all last year and the year before, and I think Mike made a determination a year before he got the job that we needed to be more experienced and to add someone like Dario (Šarić), like when we had Belli (Nemanja Bjelica), and Otto Porter (Jr.). Dario fills a role that’s really important. So part of it was just wanted to fill a couple spots with players we knew we could really use. Then I think Mike’s feeling was we needed more experience, more vets, and he did a phenomenal job. The two guys we drafted (Brandin Podziemski & Trayce Jackson-Davis) are very exciting, very advanced, very fundamentally sound, guys who fit different combinations so it’s exciting. Every year is different, every year presents different opportunities, circumstances, and I think Mike just read everything beautifully and put together a great roster with the front office.”
ON HOW CONSCIOUS HE IS OF THE VETERAN’S MINUTES RIGHT NOW:
“I mean I’m conscious of it, early season all the time because guys don’t just show up on opening night ready to play big minutes. But the last couple years we haven’t really had the luxury of keeping Steph’s (Stephen Curry) minutes down in particular. I think for my first seven years here I bet he averaged 32 minutes a game and the last couple of years it was probably 35, 36, and that matters, I think that adds up. Especially as it relates to Steph I’d like to keep those minutes closer to that 32 range if possible and this roster is proving to give me and give our staff that opportunity. Just with Chris’s (Paul) presence, his ability to run the next group that’s out there while Steph’s on the bench changes everything.”
ON INJURY UPDATES:
“Klay (Thompson) and Dario are good to go. JK (Jonathan Kuminga) is going to warm up and see how he’s feeling.”
KINGS HEAD COACH MIKE BROWN
ON THE IN-SEASON TOURNAMENT:
“I mean we’re not looking ahead to it, you know we are excited about it, and I’m excited to see it unfold but you know we’re worried about the Warriors tonight. That doesn’t mean that, it’s a shot at the In-Season Tournament, or anything like that cause we are looking forward to it. It’s just we are not preparing for that any differently like we are not starting to prepare for that now. We are just trying to get better and when we play, and hopefully we’ll play at our best because it would be awesome to win a cup.”
ON IF HE’S LOOKING FOR AN IDEAL NUMBER OF SHOTS FROM KEEGAN MURRAY TONIGHT:
“No shot number, just if he’s open let it fly, if he thinks he can get open and create a shot then go ahead. I just don’t want him to passing up a shot that I think is an open good shot for him.”
ON CHRIS PAUL COMING OFF THE BENCH FOR THE WARRIORS:
“I think it’s different for different players. There are some guys that don’t mind coming off the bench, there are some guys that want to start so I think at the end of the day, it’s up to the individual, you know. But I think when you have great teams you’re able to do stuff like that, you are able to pull guys out of the starting line and put other guys there or whatever, you know, whatever is best for the team at any given time. I’m sure there might be a time this year when somebody else starts and maybe Looney (Kevon Looney) comes off the bench ‘cause that has happened in the past and that’s why this franchise, this organization is great, because they have players that embrace their role no matter what their role is. Whether it’s starting or coming off the bench or whatever, and when you get to that point where everybody from top to bottom embraces that style of play and it’s not, you know chaotic, huge, crazy deal then you got something and they obviously have something here.”
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