Dubs learning lessons on margin of error in ‘crazy’ 0-7 road start originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
SACRAMENTO — Draymond Green called him “crazy” and “crazy” as the stat the Warriors wish they could avoid was brought up. Steph Curry said it was “difficult” to accept. No matter how annoying the reminder may be, it is the reality.
With their 122-115 loss Sunday night to the Sacramento Kings at the Golden 1 Center, the Warriors started the 2022-23 season 0-7 on the road. As a franchise, they haven’t done that since 1989-90, a season in which the Warriors won 37 games and failed to make the NBA playoffs. There has never been a team that started 0-7 on the road and then went on to be crowned champions.
If these warriors are going to rehearse, they are going to have to laugh at the story.
“You convince yourself that you can probably be .500 from how the games went, but we’re 0-7,” Curry said after the loss. “We showed a lot more life tonight, a little more consistency, trying to keep the momentum going throughout the night. We just have to understand it in terms of setting up a full game, knowing that the other team will feed off the home crowd and probably play better than expected.
“We had to meet that intensity, especially on the defensive side. Pretty disappointing to be 0-7, that’s for sure.”
In the first quarter, the Warriors finally looked set to end their road losing streak. The mistakes that have cost them far too often this season are gone. They outscored the Kings 39-26, getting 13 points from Curry, eight from Andrew Wiggins and nine from Jordan Poole off the bench.
Golden State had their way with Sacramento’s defense in that first quarter. The Warriors shot 60.9 percent from the field (14 for 23) and 54.5 percent (6 for 11) on 3-pointers in the first 12 minutes. They also returned the ball on five. The points compensated for the lack of rigor, but the situation got much worse in the second quarter.
The next 12 minutes from hell included eight turnovers and eight fouls for the Warriors, 11 free throw attempts for the Kings and only two of the downtown Dubs’ 10 tries went in the net. A team still learning from each other and tinkering with game-by-game rotations is learning how costly every mistake is right now.
“You have to understand that your margin of error on the road is much less than it is on the road,” Green said. “I think they had one at the end of the first quarter where they had a big run. I think they had a really big run in the middle of the second quarter to close out the half. They had another big run to close the third quarter, and then they had a big run to close the fourth quarter.
“You just have to understand that your margin of error on the road in this league is much less if you want to win games.”
After trailing by 13 points, the Kings opened the second quarter on a 7-0 run to make it a six-point game. At 6:44 into the second quarter, the Warriors’ 15-point lead was officially gone, with the Kings taking a 47-46 lead. Sacramento used a 10-2 run in just over two minutes to secure its first lead of the night. The Kings then used an 8-0 run in two minutes late in the second quarter to hold a two-point lead before halftime.
The home team also had a 6-0 streak in the third quarter, plus a 7-0 streak early in the fourth and a 9-0 streak later in the final quarter.
Will it cut it? The final score answers this question. The same goes for the fact that the Warriors haven’t won a game this season where Curry has scored less than 33 points. He averaged 37.2 points in the Warriors’ five wins and 29.6 in the seven losses he was involved in.
Curry totaled 27 points Sunday night after scoring 47 and 40 in the Warriors’ previous two wins.
“I wouldn’t say it’s a road concern,” Kevon Looney said. “I think we are taking steps in the right direction. I feel like this game was better than our last game on the road, so we have to keep growing as a team, keep improving and I think the victories will come.”
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So far, the Warriors are 0-2 on the second straight night. The hope is that third time is a charm with a contest against the San Antonio Spurs at Chase Center less than 24 hours after their last loss. Next, it’s off to Phoenix for the Warriors’ second road game against the Suns this season.
All that happened last time was a 29-point waste in the desert.
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