Steph Curry returns but Warriors fall to Lakers

Steph Curry returns but Warriors fall to Lakers

LOS ANGELES — Stephen Curry needed only three quarters to find his groove Sunday afternoon.

After missing a month of action due to a leg injury, Curry scored 19 of his team-high 27 points in the fourth quarter, but the Warriors still came up short to the Lebron James-less Los Angeles Lakers. Anthony Davis had 39 points, eight rebounds and six assists en route to handing Golden State a 113-105 loss, which snapped the Warriors’ five-game win streak.

It took some time for Curry to get into the flow of the game. Curry had an eight-point surge in the second quarter after missing his first three shots, but he saved his best for last.

“I felt like I got stronger as the game goes on,” Curry said.

Added Steve Kerr, “He looked great. Great to have him back. He is who he is, he strikes fear in our opponents and opens up a lot of things for his teammates.”

Anthony Lamb knocked down a 3-pointer to tie the game at 91 with 5:37 remaining in regulation. But the Lakers responded by scoring seven straight points to go up 103-95.

Curry and Klay Thompson knocked down back-to-back 3-pointers to make it a two-point game with 1:46 left, but that would be the closest the Warriors would get.

“It’s obviously not the outcome we wanted,” Curry said.

The Warriors have had a bad stretch of starts as of late, trailing opponents by double figures early in each of its last five games, including Sunday against the Lakers.

Golden State trimmed a 20-point deficit to one by the half after it stopped fouling and turned up it defensive intensity. But the Warriors couldn’t get over the hump and take a lead.

“This was not a game where I walked away saying what are we doing defensively,” Kerr said. “I liked the defense, it was pretty sound, but [the Lakers] did a great job.”

The Warriors home-and-away discrepancy remains a glaring issue. Golden State has one of the best home records in the league (27-7), but hasn’t been able to take care of business on the road.

Draymond Green shrugged his shoulders when asked for the reason behind the team’s dropoff outside the Bay. Kerr said defense wasn’t the issue Sunday.

“I wasn’t disappointed in our defense at all other than a few coverage mistakes,” Kerr said. “It was our offense that we needed to execute a little bit better, but it was a one possession game with two minutes left, we were right there.”

Whatever it is, the Warriors have to flip their road woes into wins if they want to maintain their spot in the standings.

“Our road splits have been trash all year in all categories so just tyring to correct that as much as possible is our challenge,” Curry said. “The first quarter we’re down 20 and to fight our way back shows you how much it matters to us to try to get over the hump on the road, we just got to have a better start.”

The 34-31 Warriors remain in fifth place in the Western Conference standings. They’re two games behind the fourth-place Phoenix Suns and only a half game ahead of the Minnesota Timberwolves, who are clinging to the final playoff spot.

The Warriors will look to rebound from this loss on Tuesday when they place the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Lamb’s situation

Kerr believes Lamb has done enough to earn a permanent roster spot.

Sunday afternoon marked Lamb’s 50th NBA game of this season, meaning he’s ran out of eligibility on his two-way deal. Lamb finished a team-best plus-17 in his 27 minutes against the Lakers. He contributed six points on 2 of 5 shooting from 3 and recorded six rebounds and two assists coming off the bench.

Golden State’s 15th roster spot currently belongs to G League guard Lester Quinones, whom the Warriors signed to a 10-day deal last week. But if the team’s front office decided to convert Lamb to a full-time deal, it’d have Kerr’s stamp of approval.

“I’d liked to have Lamb on the roster,” Kerr said. “He plays an important role for us because he connects a lot of lineups with his ability to space the floor and shoot the 3 and then he just plays the way we’ve always played, point-five basketball, makes a quick decision, drive it, pass it, shoot it. And then he’s big and versatile enough to guard multiple spots. he connects a lot of our lineups, when we play two bigs, we can have him at the three or you can play him at the four So he’s been really helpeful for us this year and we’d love to get him on the roster.”

Lamb is averaging seven points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game this season, while shooting 47.5% from the field and 37.9% from deep.

Draymond Green’s injury update

Draymond Green left the first quarter to get an X-ray on his left hand. The scan came back negative and Green eventually returned to the game at the tailend of the opening quarter wearing a large white pad on his injured hand. Green later ditched the support and finished the game with 15 points, nine rebounds and three assists in 31 minutes.

After the game, Green said his hand is sore “but it is what it is.

“Nobody’s that healthy at this point of the season, so just keep pushing,” Green said.


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