SAN FRANCISCO — The Warriors welcomed back reinforcements Saturday night, with Andrew Wiggins and Andre Iguodala finally making their returns to the floor again.
But as the two came back, Klay Thompson emerged as a last-minute scratch Saturday and the Warriors suffered a 115-101 loss to the Orlando Magic, booting the defending champs back down to .500.
Two-way forward Anthony Lamb scored a career-high 26 points, Jordan Poole added 21 and Kevon Looney recorded his fifth straight 10-plus rebound game but it wasn’t enough as the Warriors endured back-to-back home losses for the first time this season, with both coming at the hands of lowly Eastern Conference teams.
The Warriors missed Thompson’s offensive firepower as he’s been on a tear as of late.
All signs pointed to Thompson playing. He went through his pre-game warmup as usual and was even announced as a starter before the game, but the team plucked him from the lineup moments later due to soreness in his left knee. It’s unclear the severity of Thompson’s lingering pain in his surgically-repaired knee, something that has landed him on the team’s injury report before three games last month. Thompson has logged significant minutes over the last week, including a 46-minute outing in the Warriors’ double-overtime win over the Atlanta Hawks.
With Thompson out, Donte DiVincenzo stepped in to start his 10th consecutive game. He finished with 15 points, including five 3s to go with his eight rebounds and three assists.
There was plenty to cheer about for the Warriors early on. Wiggins appeared in his first game in a month after a groin injury and non-COVID sickness sidelined him for 15 straight games. And Iguodala made his season debut, receiving a loud, partial standing ovation when he checked in for the first time at the 7:28 mark of the opening quarter.
Lamb got hot early, going 4-for-4 from deep. He finished with a career-tying high 22 points at the half before setting a new personal-best in the second half.
The Warriors led by one after the first quarter but trailed by three at the half. The Magic pulled away in the third and Golden State never got within nine points in the fourth.
Five Magic players finished in double-figure scoring to help Orlando win its first game in Warriors land since 2012. Rookie Paolo Banchero, and Franz Wagner led the way, scoring 25 and 24 points, respectively.
Wiggins showed some signs of rust, going 4-for-12 from the field and 2-for-7 from deep. He finished with 12 points, three rebounds and two assists in his 19 restricted minutes.
The Warriors will look to rebound, with the hopes of reintegrating Thompson, Tuesday when they host the Phoenix Suns to cap off their longest homestand of the season.