Steve Alexander

Basketball Daily Dose

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Dose: Welcome back, Steph!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018


LeBron James and the Cavs stole Game 1 in overtime in Toronto on Tuesday, and the Warriors welcomed back Stephen Curry and disposed of the Pelicans again in Game 2, taking a 2-0 lead in their series, which now heads to New Orleans for Games 3 and 4. Follow me on Twitter by clicking here

 

Warriors 121, Pelicans 116 – Warriors lead 2-0Stephen Curry played for the first time since March 23 due to a left knee injury. He came off the bench, played 27 minutes and hit 8-of-15 shots, 5-of-10 3-pointers and 7-of-7 free throws for 28 points, seven rebounds, two assists and three steals in dramatic fashion. He did have six turnovers, so we at least know that he is human. Welcome back, Steph!

 

Kevin Durant got hot in the second half and tore it up in the fourth quarter, finishing with 29 points, six rebounds, seven assists, two steals, three blocks and two 3-pointers. He’s hit just 16-of-59 3-pointers in these playoffs (27%), but there’s no way he keeps missing from deep at such a clip. He literally took over the game and now that Curry is back and looking good, the only team that can beat the Warriors is probably Houston – and that battle, assuming we get to see it in the Western Conference Finals – should be one for the ages.

 

Draymond Green just missed a triple-double with 20 points, nine boards, 12 assists, a steal, two blocks and two (wide open) 3-pointers. He’s averaging a triple-double in this series, as well as 14.4 points, 13.4 rebounds, 9.2 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.6 blocks and 1.6 3-pointers over his last five games. He was also woofing with Rajon Rondo and took every opportunity to annoy and delay Anthony Davis from getting off the ground every chance he got. He’s not about to let the Warriors appear to be ‘soft’ going forward, and he was not playing around tonight.

 

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Klay Thompson was the only bust for the Warriors, hitting just 4-of-20 shots and 2-of-11 3-pointers for 10 points, six boards and three assists. He had scored 24 and 27 points in his previous two games, but his shot just wasn’t falling tonight. He’ll see a few less looks with Curry back, but that wasn’t the case tonight. His shots simply wasn’t falling.

 

Kevon Looney hit 3-of-3 shots and 2-of-2 free throws for eight points, eight boards and a steal, and David West hit 2-of-2 shots for four points, three rebounds, five assists and two blocks off the bench in the win. The Pelicans went on a late tear in the last two minutes, but the final score is misleading in this one. The Warriors were in control for most of the fourth quarter.

 

The Pelicans got great numbers from all five starters:

 

Anthony Davis: 25 points, 15 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, 3 blocks, 1 3-pointer

Jrue Holiday: 24 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 2 3-pointers

Rajon Rondo: 22 points, 7 rebounds, 12 assists, 5 steals, 3 3-pointers

Nikola Mirotic: 18 points, 9 rebounds, 2 steals, 3 3-pointers

E’Twaun Moore: 14 points, 1 steal, 4 3-pointers

 

Holiday looks amazing and it’s nice to finally see him healthy and rolling through the regular season and playoffs. He might be the most underrated point guard in the league.

 

Davis is dealing with a sore left shin and had to be attended to at halftime, which might be the least surprising thing you read in this column. He’s playing through it and with the Pels in an 0-2 hole, I don’t see how he doesn’t keep powering through the pain.

 

Mirotic fouled out, but is an offensive dynamo, and Rondo put up a monster fantasy line, living up to his “Playoff Rondo” nickname, which he is said to despise. He even hit 3-of-3 free throws, for Pete’s sake. Moore has also been playing well for the Pelicans and despite all five starters coming through with big games, the Pelicans never really had a chance in this one. Maybe that will change in Games 3 and 4 in New Orleans on Friday and Sunday, but even if they somehow win both of those, the Warriors are still clearly in the driver’s seat.

 


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Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2017-18 NBA season marks (at least) his 16th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.
Email :Steve Alexander



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