eastbaytimes.com photo: Golden State Warriors’ Jordan Poole (3) shoots and makes a three-point basket against the Orlando Magic in the first quarter of their NBA game at the Chase Center in San Francisco, Calif., on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020
By Jerry Feitelberg
San Francisco- The Warriors, after losing a heart-breaker Thursday night to the Denver Nuggets, appeared to be suffering the ill-effects of that overtime loss. Golden State may have started slowly, but they were able to overcome the slow start and went on the beat the Orlando Magic 109-95.
The visiting Orlando Magic started well and grabbed an early 13-0 lead. The Warriors went a litte over four minutes before scoring. Rookies Jordan Poole and Eric Paschall connected on a three to cut the deficit to 13-6. In fact, the Warriors went on a 13-2 run to make in 15-13.The teams played a very competitive firs quarter and the Warriors finished leading 28-25.
The Warriors continued to play well in the second quarter. The Magic kept pace and neither team could get any separtion. Both teams played well on defense and the first half ended with the Warriors in the lead with a one-point advantage 53-52.
Jordan Poole was the only Warrior in double figures. Poole has played well since his return from the G-League team in Santa Cruz. He knocked down three threes and finished with 14. Eric Paschall had nine, and Omari Spellman eight.
The Magic’s leading scorer in the first half Markell Fultz with 14. Fultz, a number one draft pick by the Philadelphia Sixers, has found a new life for himself in Orlando. No other Magic player had more than seven.
The Warriors, who used to own the third quarter during the dynasty days, have had the tables turned on them so far this season. The Warriors, on Saturday, played like the Warriors of old. They outscored the Magic 29-19.
D’Angelo Russell sparked the team to the 11-point lead 82-71 to end the period. They played well on both ends of the court. They also wanted to rebound from the Denver loss. In that game, they had a substantial lead heading into the fourth quarter.
They did not want to have that happen again. However, Orlando, a team that is in contention for a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference, came to life and went on a 14-4 run to trail 86-85. The young Warriors have learned that they cannot let down in the fourth quarter.
Eric Paschall and D’Angelo each made a bucket to go up 90-87. The Magic bounced back and regained the lead 91-90. Orlando were leading 93-32 when Damion Lee made a layup and was fouled on the play. He made the foul throw. Lee’s basket and free throw started the Warriors on a 17-2 run that propelled them to the win 109-95.
Game Notes and Stats- With the win, the W’s improved to 10-34. The last time the Warriors had a 10-game losing streak took place March 9-24, 2002. D’Angelo Russell led the team with 26 points and 12 assists.
Jordan Poole had 21, Eric Paschall 20, Willie Cauley-Stein 10, Alec Burks 11, Damion Lee 9, and Omari Spellman 8. Markell Fultz led the Magic with 23. The Warrior defense held Nikola Vucevic to 13, and Evan Fournier o 12. Both of these players average about 19 points per game. Aaron Gordon had 11, and Terrence Ross 10.
The Warriors’s Draymond Green did not play due to a finger injury. Glenn Robinson was banged up and Steve Kerr gave him the night off. The Warriors, down to nine players, recalled Ky Bowman from Santa Cruz.
The Warriors travel to Portland to face the Trailblazers Monday night. The game will start at 7pm. The Warriors return home to face Utah Jazz at the Chase Center on Wednesday.