SAN FRANCISCO — The Warriors-Kings matchup has provided some fun in recent years. The fun was entirely one-sided Tuesday in Sacramento’s 112-94 drubbing of Golden State.
It was the Warriors’ seven straight loss and their third consecutive to the Kings this season. Sacramento (24-33) can sweep a series with Golden State (12-46) for the first time since 2003 with a win on April 15. Kings guard De’Aaron Fox scored 21 points and dished out five assists as Sacramento won its third straight game.
Here are three takeaways from another dejected Warriors performance in a season full of lows.
Sloppy play dooms first half
The easiest way to catch Steve Kerr’s ire is to turn the ball over, and the Warriors did just that Monday. They committed nine of their game-high 17 turnovers in the first half, allowing the Kings to hold a 12-point lead at halftime.
The Warriors have turned the ball over a lot against the Kings this season. Golden State committed 20 turnovers against Sacramento the last time these two played in San Francisco, and the two teams combined for 57 in an unwatchable affair that night.
While their ballhandling improved in the second half, the Warriors’ lack of talent all but sealed another loss. On most nights, Golden State won’t be the best team on the floor. The Dubs have to limit mistakes enough to give themselves a chance.
Warriors can’t shoot
The Warriors became one of the best-ever shooting teams during their dynastic run. Golden State demoralized teams with a 3-point attack led by Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. Tuesday showed just how far the mighty have fallen.
Thompson and Curry are sidelined, and the Warriors shot 4-for-28 (14 percent) from beyond the arc Tuesday. Even worse? The ways the Warriors missed. Marquese Chriss and rookie Juan Toscano-Anderson traded airballs in the first half, as the Warriors shot just 5.9 percent from 3-point range in the first two quarters.
The Warriors’ 3-point struggles are understandable. Only one Golden State player who dressed Tuesday — Damion Lee — shot better than 35 percent from beyond the arc entering the night. As long as Curry and Thompson are out, the Warriors’ 3-point shooting will continue to decline.
The last time Chriss faced his hometown team, he played knowing he’d be cut by the end of the evening to make room for Lee’s multi-year contract. Chriss showed how indispensable he is to the Warriors right now Tuesday, finishing with 21 points and 10 rebounds in 25 minutes.
Chriss showed his potential in the first half, jamming an alley-oop pass from Dragan Bender over Kings big man Harry Giles. By the end of the half, he scored 13 points and grabbed five rebounds.
Bender up to Chriss 😲 pic.twitter.com/5SortbW3JG
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) February 26, 2020
The 22-year-old has played well since signing a multi-year deal last month. Chriss has averaged 18.4 points and 9.0 rebounds over his last five games. If he continues his current pace, he’ll be an intriguing piece when the Warriors are healthy next season.