The Golden State Warriors are an experienced team used to overcoming adversity, so seeing the reigning NBA champions lose their composure isn't a typical occurrence.
However, that's exactly what happened to the Warriors in Tuesday's 128-111 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks at Fiserv Forum. Golden State grew frustrated with the referees early in the game and never recovered, trailing by as many as 26 in the blowout.
The whistles started flying early and often, as the Warriors were called for three technical fouls in the first quarter alone. Golden State was unhappy with the free throw disparity, as none of its players made it to the line until late in the second quarter.
The Warriors shot just 19 free throws on the night, while Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo shot 17 by himself on his way to a game-high 30 points.
Warriors star point guard Stephen Curry was among those to receive a technical foul when he surprisingly let his anger get the better of him after a referee didn't call what he thought was an obvious foul on a three-pointer. Golden State finished with five techs, while three were called on Milwaukee.
Fans online called out the Warriors for letting the referees throw them off their game in what was supposed to be an exciting matchup against an Eastern Conference powerhouse:
The refs tonight handing out techs <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/bucks?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#bucks</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/warriors?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#warriors</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/nba?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#nba</a> <a href="https://t.co/UemTRW14fl">pic.twitter.com/UemTRW14fl</a>
At 14-14, Golden State has struggled to find consistency this season. Perhaps the slow start is just a championship hangover, but at this point, it's starting to become concerning.
The Warriors have the expectations of contending for a title once again, but there are multiple issues they need to fix if they want to achieve their goal.
Golden State will look to bounce back in the second matchup of its six-game road trip on Wednesday against the Indiana Pacers (14-14).