Brooklyn Nets’ Ben Simmons (10) dunks the ball in front of Golden State Warriors’ Jordan Poole (3) and Anthony Lamb (40) during the first half at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn on Wed Dec 21, 2022 (AP News photo)
By Jessica Kwong
BROOKLYN, NY. — The Golden State Warriors (15-18) finished their rough six-game road trip with a back-to-back blowout loss, falling 143-113 to the Brooklyn Nets (20-12) on Wednesday night at Barclays Center.
Brooklyn pummeled Golden State in the first half, scoring 91 points, the third-biggest in NBA history. The Warriors had 51 at the half, without injured Stephen Curry and Andrew Wiggins and Klay Thompson, who sat out after facing the New York Knicks on Tuesday.
The Nets made 11 of their first 12 shots and led 46-17 at the end of the first quarter. The 29-point differential was the biggest in any period in the league this season.
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said early turnovers, totaling 21 by the end the night, helped the Nets gain momentum.
“We set a bad tone. You can’t, you can’t play defense recovering from a turnover, and so that was the biggest issue to start the game. We were just trying too hard to create plays and getting out of control,” said Kerr. “And then they made everything. They were phenomenal in the first half.”
Former Warriors player Kevin Durant got a technical foul for celebrating on the sidelines after Nets teammate Ben Simmons slammed down a pass. It didn’t matter much, since the Nets were up 68-31 halfway through the second quarter.
Warriors forward Patrick Baldwin Jr., who guarded Durant after a timeout, acknowledged that many young players look up to him.
“At that moment you’ve just got to step up to the challenge. I thought a lot of guys did that tonight,” said Baldwin Jr. “KD is going to be KD, he’s going to hit his tough shots, he’s going to get to his spots, but I thought a lot of guys stepped up and accepted that challenge.”
The Warriors sank to 95-51 after Simmons scored the first two baskets in the third quarter. They did not come close to closing the gap in the fourth.
Golden State’s leading scorer was James Wiseman, who had a career-high 30 points on 12-for-14 shooting.
Wiseman, whom the Warriors recently recalled from the G League and has an uncertain future, said the team had too many turnovers and broke down on defense.
“We just got to have communication and stuff and we’ll be alright,” said Wiseman. “But I feel like we did way better than the last game just in terms of playing and stuff.”
The Warriors (15-18) are on a two-game losing streak after the Knicks beat them by 38 points, and went 1-5 on the road. They return home and have several days off before a Christmas Day game against the Memphis Grizzlies (19-11) at Chase Center. Tip-off is at 5 p.m.