It wasn’t ideal that Andrew Wiggins ended up with the ball with the game on the line on Saturday, considering he hadn’t played in over two months. However, the Warriors do feel whole again with Wiggins’ return after a lengthy personal absence, Wiggins finished with 17 points and four blocks in 28 minutes in the Game 1 loss to Sacramento, Kendra Andrews of ESPN notes.
“He’s a big part of everything we do,” guard Stephen Curry said. “When you go into a season, you want to be as fully healthy as possible because that’s the way all the pieces are meant to fit. We haven’t had it for a very long time and we tried to hold down the fort. Now we have that look back.”
Warriors coach Steve Kerr didn’t mind seeing Wiggins get a corner shot with his team down one in the waning seconds. “Take that shot all day long. Left corner 3, that’s his spot,” Kerr said.
We have more on the defending champions:
- The Kings showed grit and poise down the stretch despite their lack of playoff experience, Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area writes. Sacramento guards De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk outdueled the Warriors’ Splash Brothers in the second half. “They made plays down the stretch,” forward Draymond Green said. “They got to the free throw line. And we missed a couple shots that we’ll make.”
- Big man Kevon Looney played 32 minutes, made both of his field goal attempts, pulled down nine rebounds and added two assists, a block and a steal. He re-upped with the Warriors on a three-year, $22MM deal last offseason and Marcus Thompson of The Athletic details how Looney has become an invaluable member of the team.
- The Warriors have now lost the first road game in a series 11 times under Kerr but they won Game 2 eight of the previous 10 times. That gives the Warriors plenty of reason for optimism, since they’re familiar with making adjustments, Thompson writes. “For the most part, I liked the way that we played,” Curry said. “And if we can do that again — just with that level of execution, shore up some of our defensive kind of rotations and looks to try to slow those guys down. I know we can shoot the ball better and rebound the ball better. So if we can do those things, I like where we’re at … we’ve got to win one in this building at least, so, why not Game 2?”
- Jordan Poole is listed as questionable for Monday’s game after rolling his left ankle on Saturday.