The Golden State Warriors lost their first preseason game of the 2017-18 year.
One of the underrated aspects of making a (successful) run to the NBA Finals is that your offseason is shorter. It feels like the season just ended and the Golden State Warriors are now back. Unfortunately, they didn’t fare as well as they did in their last game.
The Warriors fell to the Denver Nuggets in their preseason debut. It was their first game since defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the Finals on the same Oracle Arena court that they celebrated on last June. They lost 108-102.
As expected, the Warriors were rusty. It was especially noticeable in their three-point shooting. Despite getting decent looks throughout the night, they were four of 33 from beyond-the-arc. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, and Draymond Green all combined for one for 19 on three-point attempts.
The starters, understandably, played less than their regular amount of minutes. Curry and Durant each played 23 minutes. Green and Thompson each played 22.
Steve Kerr managed to get every player in uniform into the game, giving two-way contract players an opportunity. Antonius Cleveland showed some fight in the loss. He scored eight points and came away with two steals in five minutes.
Jordan Bell, who was acquired on Draft Night, made the most with his opportunity. Bell played 10 minutes and was active for every single one of them. He finished with four points, two rebounds, and one block. He contested shots and filled the lane properly on a very nice sequence with Curry and Green in the half court set.
Golden State didn’t do the things that made them champions. They didn’t shoot the long ball well. They also didn’t move the ball the way Kerr would have liked, putting up just 17 assists with 14 turnovers.
The Warriors also dropped their first preseason game last year. Golden State will look to return to form on Wednesday when they take on the Minnesota Timberwolves in China at 11 pm. The team will need to fully come down from the championship high in order to make a run at it.