SAN FRANCISCO – Sometimes, the seventh time’s the charm.
The Warriors on Monday night ended a six-game losing streak, avoiding a six-game losing streak at home, by defeating the Houston Rockets 121-116 at Chase Center.
Unsurprisingly, Steph Curry led the Warriors with 32 points, but this time, Curry had some help. Five Warriors scored in double figures, including a season-high 20 points from Klay Thompson. As a team, the Warriors shot 46.8 percent from the field, 48.8 percent from 3-point range and made a season-high 21 3-pointers.
The Rockets took 19 more shots than the Warriors. Life gets a little easier when outside shots are falling for Golden State.
Here are three takeaways from the Warriors’ improvement to 7-8 this season.
What is Chris Paul’s stat line? Look no further than Paul’s performance in the first half as the Warriors took a 10-point lead. Paul played 17 minutes and was trailing by 15 behind seven points, eight assists, five rebounds, one steal and no turnovers.
Paul’s first turnover didn’t come until the opening offensive possession of the fourth quarter when he was already up to 12 points and 10 assists. His final streak was 15 points and 12 assists on 4-of-7 shooting, along with six rebounds, two steals and one turnover.
The 19-year-old NBA veteran produced 35 assists for the Warriors in their win. No one was a better receiver than Thompson. While the sharpshooter had his best game of the season, Paul assisted on five of Klay’s seven shots.
Paul now has three double-doubles this season and four games in which he has had 10 or more assists.
Clay joins the 20 point club
Perhaps playing for the Rockets was exactly what Thompson needed.
Thompson scored in the third game of the season what is still a season-high 19 points on Monday against the Rockets on 7-of-12 shooting and 5-of-10 from long range. Since then, Thompson has averaged 13 points per game on 37.4 percent shooting, as well as 30.3 percent from beyond the arc.
On Monday against Houston and Thompson’s old friend Dillon Brooks, Klay caught fire early. He scored 12 points in five minutes, hitting three three-pointers.
Thompson entered the fourth quarter three points away from scoring 20 or more points for the first time this season. Take a deep breath, the monkey might be off Splash Brother’s back. And with his first shot attempt of the fourth quarter, Thompson finally surpassed the 20-point mark of the season.
There’s no doubt that Thompson has been waiting for a game like this, and the Warriors can only hope his efficiency continues, starting Wednesday night in Phoenix.
Quality over quantity
Spending an entire quarter where Curry only takes one shot is usually not a recipe for success for the Warriors. That’s how the Warriors went in the first quarter, with Golden State taking a two-point lead after the first 12 minutes. By the end of the first half, Curry had taken just four shots.
However, he did hit 11 points on 91.7 true shooting. His final four shots of the first half had Curry counting right in front of the Rockets bench.
Curry entered the night averaging 19.7 shots per game. All he needed against the Rockets was 14 shot attempts to score 32 points, shooting 8 of 14 from the field, 5 of 9 on threes and 11 of 12 at the free throw line. Curry has now scored 20 or more points in all 13 games he’s played, 30 or more seven times, and has drained four or more threes in all of his games as well.
He didn’t have to be Superman to end a losing streak. However, Curry was still his usual self.
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