Jamal Crawford and Monta Ellis' made their much anticipated appearance together as the starting backcourt for the Golden State Warriors against the Dallas Mavericks on Jan. 28. The result, however, ended in a disjointed loss for the Warriors.
"Not this one," Crawford said. "Anyone but this one."
The secret? Chemistry and teamwork.
The most pleasant surprise, however, was Corey Maggette. Maggette, who finished with 19 points, six rebounds, and two assists, scored 12 points in the fourth quarter to fuel a much needed victory for a struggling Warriors squad.
"Whoever guards me I just think it's a mismatch because I'm just a person that tries to keep a person on their heels and attack them every which way. Everyone knows I'm trying to go to the basket," Maggette said,
For the Warriors (5-20 record on the road), this win is the first win this season against a team above .500 on the road.
In the early part of the game, the Warriors seemed to emphatically embrace their run-and-gun style of play. The Warriors had more fast break points than assists at one point of the game.
Stephen Jackson who had 15 points, six key rebounds, and seven assists, forced Peja Stojakavic, who fouled out in the final seconds, to finish with only 11 points on 3-of-11 shooting, including 1-of-6 from 3-point range. Stojakovic scored 26 points three times in the last five games.
"I love playing defense and I'm able to get the best of guys on some nights. I know it's not going to happen every night," Jackson said. "I'm glad it was tonight".
Ellis, who was forced to guard Stojakovic on plenty of possessions also seemed active defensively. Ellis finished with 17 points on 6-of-12 shooting with an alarming two assists.
Crawford, who hit the biggest shot of the game for the Warriors with 15.4 seconds left on the clock to put the Warriors up 87-82, scored 17 points to accompany his one assist!
Ronny Turiaf, a key player in tonight's victory, had four points, 11 rebounds, three blocks, and a big put-back basket at the end of the third quarter to tie the game.
Andris Biedrins, who was limited with foul trouble, finished with 12 points, nine rebounds, and major props from Hall-of-famer Hubie Brown.
When Warriors' head coach Don Nelson decided to insert both Biedrins and Turiaf together on the front-line, the Warriors struggled to score (so did the Hornets), but defended extremely well and limited some of Chris Paul's lethal penetration.
Anthony Randolph, Rob Kurz, and Jarmareo Davidson (who was signed for the remainder of the season), did not play tonight, despite being on the active roster.
The Warriors conclude their three-game road trip on Jan. 31 at Houston against the Houston Rockets.
BY THE NUMBERS:
Warriors' shooting percentage from the field facing the Hornets.
Number of wins on the road against a team above .500
Number of shots Turiaf blocked, including this current game, for the season
Number of assists for Jackson, including this current game, for the season.