Monday’s 128-83 loss to the Pelicans dropped the Warriors to 1-8 on the road and 8-10 overall. That has them at No. 11 in the Western Conference standings.
While the Warriors have been far more successful in the Bay than away from it this season, they have two tough opponents coming into town this week. Golden State will host the Los Angeles Clippers, who’ve won three straight, at Chase Center Wednesday before taking on the top-seed Utah Jazz Friday. After that, they’ll hit the road for a pair of Western Conference matchups, playing the Minnesota Timberwolves Sunday and Dallas Mavericks Tuesday.
In the meantime, here are three things to note from the Warriors’ 1-1 road trip:
The Warriors on Monday committed season-high 27 turnovers, which resulted in 31 points for the Pelicans. Seven of those giveaways came in the first quarter.
All Warriors but Kevon Looney and Patrick Baldwin Jr. gave the ball away two or more times. Rookie Ryan Rollins had five in 16 minutes and Poole committed four in 27.
Coach Steve Kerr chalked up the turnovers to the team “trying too hard to create on our own instead of trusting the simple pass.” He said it’s on him, as the coach, to teach better execution.
But turnovers have been a persistent issue for the Warriors. They give the ball away on average 17.2 times per game, second to only the Houston Rockets. It’s a problem they need an address, especially since their transition defense has been a talking point of the first five weeks.
Klay Thompson is back
A conversation with Draymond Green seems to have gotten Klay Thompson back on track after a rough start to the season.
Thompson followed up an efficient 20-point night at Chase Center with a 41-point explosion in Sunday night’s win over the Houston Rockets. Thompson was scorching hot out of the gates, opening the game with a 20-point quarter before finishing the night by making 10 3-pointers, including a few daggers down the stretch.
After pressing his shot, Thompson appeared to be back to his old ways, playing more freely and letting the flow of the game come to him. Monday night alone helped boost Thompson’s shooting percentages from 36.6% overall to 38.8% and 33.6% from 3 to 37.7%.
“When Klay worries about what happens with this team, Klay plays great and we win,” Green said Sunday after the win.Thompson joined the rest of the starters, with the exception of iron man Kevon Looney, in sitting the second night of the back-to-back. But he seems to be heading in the right direction as he continues to pen a comeback story of the ages.
Back to the basics
The Warriors recalled Baldwin and Rollins — not James Wiseman — from the G League for additional help on the second night of a back-to-back in New Orleans Monday.
The decision to leave Wiseman with the minor-league team, despite being thin at center, shows just how dire the former No. 2 overall pick’s situation is. He needs reps, of course, after playing less than a full 82-game NBA slate over the last three years. But more importantly, Wiseman needs to go back to the basics and perfect the game’s cores.
“When you get attention in the G League it’s easier to make progress than the stops and starts in the NBA when you aren’t in the rotation,” Kerr said.
Wiseman posted double-doubles in each of his first two G League games, averaging 17 points and 11 rebounds per contest. But he remains a defensive liability. He was the team’s only player to finish with a negative plus/minus rating in Monday night’s G League win. He’s also committed a total of seven turnovers and eight fouls in about 48 minutes over both games.
Wiseman had been praised for his work throughout the summer and in practices, but he hasn’t been able to figure it out in games. The hope is time in the G League will get him there. If not, he could be facing the trading block.