It looked like it was going to be another great night for the San Antonio Spurs, but then it wasn’t. It looked like it might not be a particularly great night for the Golden State Warriors, but then it was.
One game after their head-to-head battle, the Spurs and Warriors had contrasting evenings.
Spurs do something they never ever do
The Spurs led the Charlotte Hornets 30-7 after one quarter. Kemba Walker and Al Jefferson were doing nothing. If ever a game was over, it seemed that this one was. The Spurs entered the night 22-0 when leading by at least 20 after one quarter.
But things took a dramatic change. The Hornets outscored the Spurs 84-60 the rest of the way, including 55-37 in the second half.
Jeremy Lin powered the comeback on a night in which Walker and Jefferson combined to go 3-of-20. Lin outscored the Spurs' bench by himself, 29-18. His 15 fourth-quarter points were one fewer than the Spurs scored and the second-most points in a fourth quarter in his career.
Lin was 5-of-7 in the fourth quarter, including 3-of-3 from 3-point range. As noted in the shot chart below, his only two misses came on shots in the paint.
It was the second straight strong game for Lin, who has had a rough month. Entering Monday, he was averaging 8.9 points on 33 percent shooting in nine games in March. The 29 points were his second-most in a game this season. He scored 35 against the Raptors on Dec. 17.
The 23-point blown lead was the biggest by the Spurs in the Tim Duncan era.
Teams that defeat the Warriors are 2-5 in the first game following that win.
Warriors find a way
The Warriors bounced back from a defeat just as they have all season. They’re now 7-0 in the game following a loss. It was a game with a few oddities.
Stephen Curry scored 19 points but had a rough shooting night, going 6-of-17 from the field and 2-of-9 from 3-point range. Curry is 3-of-21 on 3-point shooting in the past two games. He also hasn't made a field goal in the fourth quarter of either game (0-of-6, all on 3-point attempts).
Klay Thompson chipped in 17 points, but did so in bizarre fashion. He was 5-of-5 from 3-point range and 0-of-9 from 2-point range. According to Elias Sports Bureau research, that’s the worst oh-fer on 2-pointers by a player who was perfect from 3-point range and made at least five 3-pointers.
Elias research also notes that the Warriors became the third team in NBA history (along with the Spurs) to go at least 70 games into a season without losing consecutive games. The record of 74 was set by the 1984-85 Celtics.
The Warriors now have 31 road wins. If they win all three of their remaining road games, they would set the record for most road wins in a single season (currently owned by the 1995-96 Bulls with 33). They are the first team to win at least 31 road games in a season since the 2007-08 Celtics.