One game of resting seemed to do the trick, as Stephen Curry was at his best in a 114-107 win for the Golden State Warriors against the sliding Washington Wizards.
Curry scored 32 points on 11-of-18 from the field, including five 3-pointers and 8 assists, not showing any signs of playing on a bad ankle. His return immedialty made it so much easier for everyone else on the team, as Klay Thompson didn’t need to try and do too much, scoring 17 points, while Marreese Speights scored 16 off the bench, Draymond Green looked competent again with 13 points and Harrison Barnes added 11.
Just a reminder – except for Thompson, everyone was pretty much terrible in their previous game which Curry sat out. It’s not just about his points or his passing ability, but more of how seriously the other team takes him. A defense has to be prepared for almost everything he does because of his range, dribbling ability and knack to shoot while in motion, making it very difficult to cover all bases, and leaving an opportunity for his teammates to get open looks.
Curry is one of the four or five candidates for the MVP award which seems a bit difficult to hand out right now. He’s averaging 23.8 points with 7.9 assists which might be a bit low for an MVP, but no one is shooting as efficiently among the candidates, and he’s proven to be the type of player that causes the house of cards to crumble when he’s not there, not to mention being on the team with the best record in the league which never hurts earn votes.
Despite their recent offensive woes, it wasn’t shooting that hampered the Wizards this time. They shot 53.2% from the field, which is often a recipe for victory. However, they turned the ball over 26 times, a season high for them, and were outplayed in the fourth, which is a recurring theme over the last month or so, causing them to slide down the playoff seeding in the East. John Wall, finishing with 16 points and 11 assists, turned the ball over eight times.
The Warriors can win 28 more games in a row and match the all-time best record by the Chicago Bulls (72-10), but that’s not going to happen. However, they’re not going to be too far off, backed by the fact that the Curry-Thompson-Barnes-Green-Bogut lineup is 33-3 this season, although it’s not going to be easy remaining undefeated in the coming four games, all on the road, which include playing the Cavaliers, Celtics, Nets and Raptors. The Warriors have already lost one game on this six-game road trip at Indiana.