Finally. Staring a 1-4 road trip right in the face, the Warriors played their best quarter of the year, and turned a 10-point deficit entering the 4th quarter into a seven-point win in New Orleans, 110-103. I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes.
OK, I didn’t see it. I watched it, online (long story). And even with that, I was disgusted by what I didn’t see. After blowing double digit leads in both Miami and Orlando, G’State decided to forego that route, and just lose the old fashioned way, by getting their behinds kicked from the get-go.
But a funny thing happened on the way to Bourbon Street. The Warriors reversed the script and in a scene out of Bizarro World, where up is down, and down is up, a Warriors loss became a Warriors win. “Worlds are colliding!”
Down 82-72 entering the final 12 minutes, Monta Ellis quickly took over. He nailed a 3-pointer, and a jumper to cut the lead in half, and then after a Jarret Jack jumper, hit another three to cut the lead to 84-80. The future all-star guard led all scorers with 29 points, 12 of them in the 4th quarter.
Still down by four with just under eight minutes left to play, Ellis found Ekpe Udoh for a jam Dorell Wright hit a three; David Lee scored inside and was fouled to the chagrin of Emeka Okafor who got T’d up. Stephen Curry hit the free throw, and Lee did as well for an old fashioned 3-point play followed by Udoh with another basket and Curry with one from downtown, his only one from distance in the game and the Warriors were on a 14-0 run that gave them a 99-89 lead with 4:13 left. Even the Warriors couldn’t blow this one, right?
Not so fast. New Orleans responded with a 10-2 run to trim the lead back to 101-99. That was as close as the Hornets would get. Golden State hit 9 of 10 free throws down the stretch, and that flight home from the Big Easy is now going to be a much more enjoyable ride.
As Jack Buck famously said about a home run I’d rather forget, “I don’t believe what I just saw.” Well, I don’t believe what I just didn’t see. And this time, it sure looks good.
About the Author
Written by Scott Johnston
Scott Johnston is a longtime Sports TV Producer/Writer from Los Angeles who now lives just outside of Boston. After a long career at KCAL-TV in L.A., where Scott covered such things as Kirk Gibson’s HR, Hank Gathers death, and Magic Johnson’s retirement, NBA ll-Star Game MVP performance and subsequent return to the NBA. His favorite team is the Oakland A’s and whomever happens to be playing the Yankees, USC or the Cowboys on that particular day. Scott left his staff position at KCAL and formed his own small production company in 1996 while continuing to freelance there and at other stations, including WTTG in DC for two years. His company, ProTVSports, started out covering one team during Spring Training in 1997 but now covers six of the Cactus League teams. He also covers tennis and golf events during the year and has had the privilege of covering 5 NBA Finals, including two of the last three. Scott loves all sports, but considers baseball to be his favorite. He loves politcs, reading, movies and his wife and two daughters—not in that order!