Warriors defeat Lakers by historic three points on shooting night

LOS ANGELES — Three-point shooting has been synonymous with the Golden State Warriors over the past decade.

With two of the most dominant shooters in NBA history, it's part of their game plan every night. But it doesn't always work. Against the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night, their calling card was a 134-120 win.

The Warriors shot 63.4% from 3 on 26-of-41 shooting, the best field goal percentage from long range in a game in NBA history (minimum 40 attempts), according to ESPN Stats & Information research. To put that into perspective, there have been over 3,400 instances of a team making at least 40 3-pointers in an NBA contest.

“That was basically the game,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “We made a million from 3… Everybody got to work. Shooting 63% from 3 is crazy. We always try to turn the lights out, but it doesn't always happen.”

Draymond Green was the most eye-catching, going 5-of-7 from beyond the arc and finishing with 15 points. Stephen Curry went 6-for-6 and Klay Thompson 5-of-10, while Andrew Wiggins and Brandin Podzemski scored three goals each and Gary Payton II added two goals. The Warriors tied 26 3s for third in a game in franchise history.

It was also the second time Green, Curry and Thompson hit at least 5 threes in the same game.

The Lakers have long been a team that steps back from green. He said they were the most “awful” in the league in that game plan. According to Second Spectrum, 4 of Green's threes were wide open, meaning the closest defender was at least 6 feet away. This is the most he has scored in a game this season.

See also  Iga Swiatek vs Ons Jabeur: The US Open final set for a captivating match

With Anthony Davis out, the Lakers were not only given green space, but missed their assignments with Curry multiple times, leaving him wide open.

“Our game plan was for these guys to score a three-pointer tonight, to let them shoot, kind of,” Lakers forward Rui Hachimura said. “That was our game plan and they did it. So, we can't do anything about it.”

“It's different with AD there,” Green said. He added: “He covers up a lot of mistakes, so his appearance is completely different when he is not on the field.”

With this win, the Warriors are just half a game away from the Lakers for the ninth seed. The Warriors also hold the tiebreaker and have one more game remaining than L.A. If the Warriors win, they will finish ahead of the Lakers.

Golden State is also just one game behind the eighth-place Sacramento Kings. But, since they don't get the tiebreaker, the Warriors will need the Kings to lose at least two more games, which is possible due to Sacramento's struggles.

“The biggest difference [between the 8- and 9-seed] “It's getting an extra game to win two games, which is big,” Green said. “If we can get 8, that's incredible. You'll love two swings, or two bites of the apple.”

Competing for seeding in tournament play is a far cry from what Golden State has been accustomed to over the past 10 years.

“We're not the old team,” Curry said. “No matter what the result is next week, it's hard to compare it to years past when we get announcements of, 'Oh, we got first place,' but at least you have something to play for.”

See also  Luis Rubiales: Spanish soccer player Jennifer Hermoso has filed a formal complaint regarding an unwanted kiss

But the Warriors are trying to embrace this new reality. They don't see their seed as the defining part of their identity. Instead, it's more about what they do with it.

“We got a lot of motivation from last year's Heat team that had to play two games and make it to the Finals,” Thompson said. “I think we can do it. Obviously we can't look ahead, but whatever happens, we will be ready. We know it can be done. There is no task too difficult for us.”

ESPN Statistics & Information contributed to this report.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *