The Golden State Warriors Kelly Oubre Jr connects a three point shot against the Dallas Mavericks on Thu Feb 4, 2021 in Dallas (AP News photo)
By Jerry Feitelberg
The Golden State Warriors opened a four-game road trip in Dallas Thursday night. The Warriors had nine players available after the team announced that Eric Paschall could not play due to his knee injury. The Warriors did not have a player taller than six-foot-seven inches.
The Maverick’s lineup featured Kristaps Porzingis at seven-feet-three inches tall, two players at 6-10, Maxi Kleber, and Dwight Powell. Luka Doncic was taller than any Warrior on the floor.
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr had to figure out how his team could compete with the bigger Maverick team. He inserted Juan Toscano-Anderson at the center position. He knew his team would have to find a way to outrun the Mavericks and find a way to win. The Warriors, all nine of them, played the game as planned. They outran, outhustled, outshot, and blew away the bigger Mavericks to win 147-116.
It was a fast and furious first half of basketball. Steph Curry and Kelly Oubre paced the Warrior attack in the first quarter. Curry had 13, and Kelly eight. The team connected on six threes to lead 36-34.
The Mavericks won the second quarter 42-38 to finish the first half with a narrow two-point lead 76-74. Oubre led the Warriors with 22 points. It was the most points ever scored by Oubre in any half of basketball in his career. Curry was second with 20.
The Warriors connected on eleven three in 25 tries. The Mavericks Luka Doncic recorded 23 points and connected on three threes. Porzingis had eight, Tim Hardaway, Jr, had 14 points and knocked down four threes. Jalen Brunson, coming off the bench, had 17 points, and he, too, had three threes.
The third quarter belonged to the Warriors. They ran the court, found the open man, and made shots. Oubre continued to excel on both ends of the court. Curry worked his magic to put points on the board.
The Mavericks kept pace with the Warriors as they trailed 95-93. The Warriors put together a 15-2 run near the end of the quarter to lead 110-95. The Warriors outscored Dallas 36-20 to finish the quarter leading by fourteen 110-96.
The Warriors, as usual, started the fourth quarter with Curry and Draymond Green on the bench. The second unit, led by Oubre and Andrew Wiggins, continued the Warrior onslaught. Backup guards Damion Lee and Mychal Mulder knocked down several threes. They outscored the Mavs 37-20 to win 147-116.
Game Notes and Stats: With the win, the Warriors are 12-10 for the year. The Mavs are 1-7 in their last eight games and are 9-14 for the year.
Oubre had his best game of the year as a Warrior. He finished with a career-high 40 points. Oubre had eight rebounds, two assists and was 14 for 21 from the floor. He connected on seven threes in ten tries.
The Warriors had seven of the nine available players in double-figures. Curry finished the night with 28 points, three rebounds, six assists, and he made four threes. Andrew Wiggins had 18. Juan Toscano-Anderson tallied 14 points, eight rebounds, five assists to go along with two threes.
Green had his best game of the year. Green also had a double-double. He knocked down eleven points, had six boards and fifteen assists. Damion Lee made four three to finish with 17. Mychal Mulder connected on two three and ended the night with 12.
The Warriors shot 57.3% from the floor. They made 22 threes in 43 tries. They outrebounded the bigger Mavs 54-45, and they recorded 37 assists on 51 buckets. They ran the court, made threes, and played well on defense as they held the Mavericks to 40 points in the second half.
Luka Doncis led the Mavs with 27 points. The Warriors held him to four points in the second half. Porzingis finished with 25. The big Russian made five threes. Tim Hardaway, Jr had 19, and Jalen Brunson knocked down 18.
The Warriors will play the Mavericks again Saturday night at the American Airlines Arena in Dallas. Game tip will start at 5:30 pm.