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sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG: Warriors’ season ends unceremoniously with blowout loss to Kings in play-in

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o BANG: Warriors’ season ends unceremoniously with blowout loss to Kings in play-iAllen

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BANG: Warriors’ season ends unceremoniously with blowout loss to Kings in play-in

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From: ala...@yahoo.com (Allen)
Newsgroups: alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors
Subject: BANG:_Warriors’_season_ends_unceremoniously_wit
h_blowout_loss_to_Kings_in_play-in
Date: Wed, 17 Apr 2024 16:35:28 -0700
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 by: Allen - Wed, 17 Apr 2024 23:35 UTC

Warriors’ season ends unceremoniously with blowout loss to Kings in play-in
Klay Thompson went scoreless in 32 minutes as Warriors were run off
floor by Kings
>Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry (30) sits on the floor after
being knocked down by Sacramento Kings’ Domantas Sabonis (10) in the
third quarter of their NBA play-in tournament game at the Golden 1
Center in Sacramento, Calif., on Tuesday, April 16, 2024. (Jose Carlos
Fajardo/Bay Area News Group)

Danny Emerman is a Bay Area News Group sports reporter
By DANNY EMERMAN | demerman@bayareanewsgroup.com | Bay Area News Group
PUBLISHED: April 16, 2024 at 9:39 p.m. | UPDATED: April 17, 2024 at 1:55
p.m.
https://www.eastbaytimes.com/2024/04/16/warriors-kings-play-in-loss-blowout-season-over/

SACRAMENTO — Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson didn’t even
get a chance to spend what might be their final moments in the same
uniform on the court.

In a blowout play-in loss to the Kings, the dynastic trio checked out
together with 2:13 left in a game that was already decided. The three
legends are used to playing deep into May and June. Instead, their
season ended on April 16.

The Warriors were healthier and well rested. Their four future Hall of
Famers had exponentially more playoff experience than the young Kings.
They finished the season strong, while Sacramento stumbled.

But Thompson picked a bad time to play the worst game of his career.
Andrew Wiggins, who had turned around his season, registered a minus-25
in 25 minutes. Steph Curry, who ended Sacramento’s season with 50 points
last spring, grinded against double and triple teams to reach 22 points.

>Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry #30 Draymond Green, #23 and Klay
Thompson #11 react in the fourth quarter of their NBA play-in tournament
game against the Sacramento Kings at the Golden One Center in
Sacramento, Calif., on Tuesday, April 16, 2023. Thompson is now a free
agent. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group)

And the Warriors’ much-improved defense — led by Green — let Keegan
Murray unload eight 3-pointers for a game-high 32 points.

“We just couldn’t stay with them,” Steve Kerr said postgame. “They
dominated us physically. I think they had about 18 more field goal
attempts than us, between the turnovers and the offensive boards. It was
total domination.”

Curry, Thompson and Green peeled themselves off the visitor’s bench at
the final horn, losers of the 9/10 play-in game. Thompson lingered for
an extra moment on the court before disappearing into the tunnel.
Sacramento shot 46.2% from deep, lighting the Warriors up and lighting
the beam in a 118-94 win to end Golden State’s season. The Warriors are
now 0-3 all-time in play-in games.

Golden State’s season arrived at the Golden 1 Center after a
particularly windy six months. The Warriors nearly went off the rails
with Draymond Green suspended for a quarter of the year due to his
erratic behavior. Tragedy struck when assistant coach Dejan Milojevic
died in Salt Lake City.

The roster — one of Kerr’s favorites to coach — rallied amid adversity.
They resuscitated their season behind a new starting frontcourt of Green
and Trayce Jackson-Davis, committing to defense as their identity. They
won six straight and finished the season winners of 10 of 12.

But now, their season’s over. Much more could be, too.

Questions will swirl about the future of Golden State’s aging dynastic
core and what will come next. Until the very end, the Warriors
maintained belief that they had what it takes to make a special playoff
run. Then, abruptly, the unceremonious end came.

>Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr reacts in the second
quarter of their NBA play-in tournament game against the Sacramento
Kings at the Golden One Center in Sacramento, Calif., on Tuesday, April
16, 2023. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group)

“This is life,” Kerr said. “This is how it works. You don’t get to stay
on top forever.”

Murray scored 11 of the Kings’ first 13 points, springing loose for 3s.
With each make, a raucous Golden 1 Center crowd sang “Kee-gan, MUR-RAY.”
It’s no secret that Murray, who hit 12 3s in a game this year, can
shoot. But a common theme when the Warriors slip is losing 3-point
shooters too often.

Domantas Sabonis, who the Warriors typically bottle up, muscled his way
through Draymond Green for a bucket in the post, then Steph Curry had
his pocket picked. Then Fox stripped Andrew Wiggins clean.

From the start, the Warriors looked out of sorts. Curry, who dominated
the last time these teams played a single-elimination game, had just
five at the half. The team looked nothing like the team that finished
the regular season strong.

Golden State ended the regular season as one of the league’s hottest
teams, with a 22-11 second-half record. The Warriors won two more games
than they did a year prior, making important progress in some key areas.
But it was only enough for 10th best in a loaded Western Conference that
has caught up to them.

That’s just a moral victory for a franchise that no longer tolerates
them. Their standards are much higher now after winning four NBA titles
in the past decade.

There were no moral victories for the Warriors in this play-in game.
They got crushed in the non-Curry minutes. They were bullied on the
boards early. They turned the ball over too much against Sacramento’s
ball pressure.

>Golden State Warriors' Klay Thompson #11 drives to the basket as he's
guarded by Sacramento Kings' Domantas Sabonis #10 in the third quarter
of their NBA play-in tournament game at the Golden One Center in
Sacramento, Calif., on Tuesday, April 16, 2023. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area
News Group)

Thompson missed all 10 of his shots, going scoreless in 32 minutes. He
also lost his handle on a drive against Keon Ellis, clanked a wide-open
3 in transition and struggled defensively. Thompson had never attempted
as many shots without hitting a single one in his 13-year career.

Despite Thompson and Curry combining for just five first-half points,
the Warriors only trailed by four at the half because of a late surge
from Jonathan Kuminga and stronger perimeter defense.

But the Kings kept executing offensively, generating open shots around
the arc and forcing Warriors turnovers. They were quicker, tougher and
smarter.

“They were more physical than us the whole game,” Green said.

Even the Warriors’ patented plays weren’t working. When Curry was
trapped, he bounced to Green, who found Andrew Wiggins along the
baseline for an alley-oop. But Wiggins couldn’t handle Green’s lob,
leading to a Keon Ellis 3 on the other end. The five-point swing was an
ominous sign.

Murray — Kee-gan, Mur-ray — hit his sixth 3 late in the third to match
Sacramento’s biggest lead of 16.

>RELATED ARTICLES
Kurtenbach: The Warriors’ future is murky, but here’s what to expect
this offseason
Warriors exit interviews: Gary Payton II wants to stay long-term,
Chris Paul not done yet
How the Warriors lost their way this season
Photos: Golden State Warriors season is over after 118-94 play-in
tournament loss to Sacramento Kings
Warriors' dynasty is over. It ended in embarrassment

Trailing by 15 entering the final frame, reality began to set in. An
offseason abyss loomed. Thompson will hit free agency. The Warriors will
need to shed eight figures worth of salary to avoid catastrophic luxury
tax costs. Mike Dunleavy Jr. nailed his first draft, but there’s still a
difficult task of spending less while clawing back into contention ahead
of him.

A dramatic comeback would’ve delayed the doomsday event. Instead, the
Kings started the fourth on a 6-2 run, with Harrison Barnes’ fall-away
over Green putting Golden State in a 19-point hole with 9:35 left.

The Warriors made a mini-push, but more 3s from Murray and Barnes kept
the Golden 1 Center crowd rowdy. Golden State kept adding to its
turnover total, which landed at 16.

The Kings’ lead ballooned to 20. Kings fans stood for the final four
minutes — sweet revenge for last year coursing through their veins.

Thompson, who has painted so many postseason masterpieces, hit the bench
late alongside Curry and Green. One day, all three will have statues
outside Chase Center. But the Kings made them look like statues when it
mattered most.

“I could never see myself not with those two guys,” Curry said postgame
of Thompson and Green. “I understand this league changes and there’s so
many things that go into it, and we’re not going to play forever. But
we’ve experienced so much together. At the end of the day, again, I know
they want to win, I want to win — that’s all I’m worried about.”

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>Golden State Warriors’ Klay Thompson #11 and Draymond Green #23 leave
the court after the Sacramento King’s 118-94 NBA play-in tournament win
at the Golden One Center in Sacramento, Calif., on Tuesday, April 16,
2024. Thompson is now a free agent. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group)


sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG: Warriors’ season ends unceremoniously with blowout loss to Kings in play-in

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