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Golden State Warriors: One Question, Where Was This Effort Last Night?

OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 28:  Stephen Jackson #1 of the Golden State Warriors dribbles the ball during their game against the Houston Rockets at Oracle Arena on October 28, 2009 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Steven ResnickSenior Writer INovember 10, 2009

After Sunday night's dreadful performance against the Sacramento Kings, it seemed like a matchup against the Timberwolves would be tougher for the Warriors than expected.

Against the Kings it looked like the Warriors players had mailed it in on coach Don Nelson. There was no chemistry, there was hardly any effort, and too many one-on-one possesions.

A 13-point loss against the Kings didn't look too bad on the scoreboard, but the game was over well before the final buzzer sounded.

Flash forward to Monday's game and the Warriors resembled a totally different team. The Warriors were moving the basketball, they were not playing one-on-one basketball, they were getting into the open court, and most importantly they were playing defense all night long.

In the first quarter it seemed like the Timberwolves wanted to hang around. Johnny Flynn was hitting his jumpers, Wayne Ellington hit a few, and Sasha Pavlovic hit some as well to keep the Timberwolves close into the second round.

But, in the final minutes of the second quarter, the Warriors ran the Timberwolves out of the building thanks to a 13-2 run to end the half.

For the Warriors there really wasn't anything you could say they did badly.

If you want to get nit-picky you could say that Anthony Randolph did not have an assist. Other then that, the Warriors played a complete game.

The Warriors guards rebounded extremely well, Monta Ellis lead the way with 10 followed by Randolph's seven.

Stephen Jackson lead the passing charge with a career-high 15 assists followed by Stephen Curry's five.

As for the best stat of the night, the Warriors forced 28 turnovers and 22 of those turnovers were steals. Acie Law lead the way with five and Jackson followed that up with four steals of his own.

Also, the Warriors had nine blocked shots. Randolph lead the way with three and Jackson had two.

If you're looking for balance, eight of the 10 Warriors players who saw action scored in double figures. This includes three bench players who only saw time in the fourth quarter and all five bench players that appeared scored in double figures.

Randolph lead the way off the bench with 23 points, Anthony Morrow had 20 points, C.J. Watson had 13 points, Corey Maggette had 11 points, and Law had 10 points.

Coincidentally, two of the Warriors five starters scored below double figures. Mikkie Moore was a given with only two points and Curry added eight points.

Azubuike finished with a game high 31 points for the Warriors on 13-19 shooting. He was effective both inside and outside.

At the end of the night the team shot 57.1 percent from the floor, 52.2 percent from beyond the arc, 78.9 percent from the free throw line, had 38 rebounds, 36 assists, 12 turnovers, nine blocked shots, and only 19 fouls.

Looking at the Timberwolves, the team shot 44.7 percent from the field, 25 percent from beyond the arc, 80 percent from the free throw line, had 53 rebounds, 23 assists, 28 turnovers, seven steals, six blocked shots, and 31 fouls.

It's not hard to see why the Warriors ended up defeating the Timberwolves 146-105. Let's just hope that the Warriors can keep this kind of effort up!

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