Golden State Warriors Tank Watch: San Antonio Spurs Trounce Dubs, 120-99
If there was any remote possibility of the Golden State Warriors halting their losing streak and not continuing their tank mode, it evaporated as soon as the ball was thrown up for the opening tipoff of their contest against the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night.
In the latest edition of "Tank Watch," the Spurs did what they always do against the Dubs: win.
Monday's 120-99 Spurs victory gave the Warriors 14 straight defeats at the hands of San Antonio. The last Golden State victory in the series occurred in January of 2008—when George Bush was still holding down fort as the president of the United States. The only member of the Warriors who remembers that win is center Andris Biedrins.
This one-sided trend came at a perfect time in the Warriors' schedule. Golden State has mentally checked out of the remainder of the NBA season, knowing full well that if it happens to finish with one of the league's seven worst records, the Warriors will retain their lottery pick in this summer's NBA draft.
As such, tank mode has become an unexpected—subconscious—theme for the rest of the season.
Losing is not an option—it's the only option.
The loss to the Spurs was the Warriors' fifth straight overall, as they trudge to the finish line of this shortened NBA season. It gives Golden State a 22-38 record, tying them with the Detroit Pistons for eighth-worst in the league. The Warriors need Detroit to man up and win a couple of ballgames, and they also need the New Jersey Nets and/or Toronto Raptors to secure a win, too.
Meanwhile, Golden State is doing its part to keep up—or down—with the rest of the NBA's bottom seven. Losing is a necessity for this Warriors club, so it was a good thing San Antonio was in town.
With the Dubs undermanned after losing David Lee over the weekend for the rest of the season, it was as close to a shoo-in as possible that Golden State was going to lose on Monday. During their 14-game winning streak against the Warriors, the Spurs have not made it very competitive, averaging a whopping 114.2 points per game, while never scoring under 100 points in any of those matchups.
Will the Warriors finish with one of the NBA's seven worst records?
Thus, the question wasn't whether the Warriors would in fact continue their tank mode but by how much would they be spanked by their torturing Spurs nemeses?
San Antonio toyed with the Dubs all night long, playing each of the team's 12 members for at least 11 minutes. Without Lee manning the power forward spot for Golden State, the Spurs took advantage of a vacant middle of the paint, parading to the foul line 43 times compared to the Warriors' 17 free-throw attempts.
Yes, despite the fact that San Antonio shot 39.1 percent from the field, Golden State still lost by 21 points.
That's how easy it was for the Spurs.
Again, the Warriors put up an admirable effort, but they simply did not have enough fire power to outscore the Spurs, nor enough will power to stop them.
It's always tough to get beat by the same opponent over and over and over again. We've all experienced situations where repeatedly losing to a certain adversary almost makes the game or contest the opposite of enjoyable.
Certainly, the Warriors must feel that way every time they have to face the Spurs.
But for the sake of their tank mode and the goal of losing as many games as possible down the stretch—potentially all of the remaining games on their schedule—Golden State is glad to have had San Antonio trounce them—again. There are not many surer things than a Spurs win over the Warriors.
Good thing they play each other one more time this season.
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