Today's installment of Better Know An Opponent focuses on the Golden State Warriors. Let's take a look.... MORE →
Each day that there's a playoff game, we'll have three things to watch in the NBA playoffs. Each note will be accompanied by a contest. We'll announce winners after each round. Here's today's three things to watch:
1) Miami bouncing back. Even without Derrick Rose, Kirk Hinrich, and Luol Deng -- again -- the Chicago Bulls shocked the Miami Heat with a 93-86 victory in Miami in Game 1, thanks to improbable performances yet again from Nate Robinson, Jimmy Butler, and Joakim Noah. After losing Game 1, Miami has to feel an impetus to defend its home court, and LeBron James is always due for a dominating performance. I am notoriously terrible at predictions, but I smell a blowout cooking. Is tonight the night the wheels finally fall off for a beaten-up Chicago team?
2) Stephen Curry. Before Game 1 of the Golden State Warriors-San Antonio Spurs series, I said that no player in the league has a light as green as Stephen Curry, and his otherworldly shooting ability makes him a threat for a huge scoring night in any game. Sure enough, Curry dropped a 44-point outburst on the Spurs in a thrilling 129-127 overtime loss -- outscoring his next two teammates combined by a full six points. The Warriors offense runs through Curry as its first and second option. Will lightning strike twice again?
3) Nate Robinson. Perhaps the most improbable of all storylines in this year's playoffs is Nate Robinson's sudden emergence as an offensive juggernaut. Through eight playoff games, Robinson has averaged 18.3 points in 31.3 minutes per game, shooting 50.4% from the field and 36.6% from deep. Robinson, unbelievably, is doing most of his damage when the game matters most: he leads the entire NBA playoffs in points per game in the fourth quarter with 8.3, including 11 against the Heat in Game 1. The Bulls will need him to come through once again to have a shot against the Heat in Game 2.
Open Thread Here!
Grade The Players Here!
Tonight: Brooklyn Nets vs. Golden State Warriors, 7:30 P.M. (Barclays Center)
Broadcast: YES Network, Ian Eagle & Greg Anthony, WFAN, Chris Carrino-Tim Capstraw
Brooklyn Nets (11-6, 7-2 home):
104.4 offensive rating (7th), 102.4 defensive rating (18th), 90.76 possessions per game (29th)
Golden State Warriors (11-7, 5-4 away)
101.9 offensive rating (13th), 101.1 defensive rating (13th), 95.68 possessions per game (7th)
Injury Notes: Brook Lopez is out for the Brooklyn Nets. Andrew Bogut is out for the Golden State Warriors. Former Net and current Warriors small forward Richard Jefferson was listed as probable for tonight with a right calf injury, and will play with a brace.
From Coach Johnson:
We gotta find, quickly, starting tonight, a better rhythm for guys we have in uniform. We're going to change some things around, maybe give a starter a little earlier rest so we can bring him back earlier in the second... that's a big part of guys performing well, trying to get them comfortable in the rotation. But for us, guys that I brought in yesterday, they don't have 50 chances to get out there and get it right. When you are a low-to-medium minute player, you've got to be efficient when you get out there. It's taken some of our guys too long to get out there and warm up. They've got to hit the ground running.
Three things to watch tonight:
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Morning morning! Got my chai tea latte and the pound cake ready for shootaround. Big game at the Barclays center tonight
— Stephen Curry (@StephenCurry30) December 7, 2012
After back-to-back losses to the reigning champion Miami Heat and reigning Western Conference Champion Oklahoma City Thunder, the Golden State Warriors come to town to take on the Brooklyn Nets tonight at Barclays Center. The Warriors are 11-7 and have won four of their last five games, but they're also in their second game of a seven-game East Coast road trip.
I haven't seen too much Warriors basketball, except I did have the pleasure of watching this live, which was, uh, well, just watch:
Wouldn't it be nice if Brook Lopez did that on Nikola Pekovic just once while the Nets were blowing a 22-point lead at home against Minnesota?
Outside of that game, I haven't watched enough Golden State basketball, so I asked someone who does to help us learn a little more about the team. Joining me to talk Warriors is J.M. Poulard, blogger at ESPN TrueHoop Warriors Affiliate WarriorsWorld. J.M. knows his Warriors -- follow him tonight for the alternate perspective on tonight's contest.
Usual format: I ask J.M. three questions on the Golden State Warriors, he asks me three on the Brooklyn Nets. Onward!
J.M. Poulard on the Golden State Warriors
Devin: Are the Warriors better or worse off after the Monta Ellis trade?
J.M.:... MORE →