The Golden State Warriors lost Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals to the Los Angeles Lakers by 30 points on Saturday, and they’re facing a critical Game 4 on the road on Monday.
They have won games such as this one before, but this is a different Warriors team than the ones that have reached the NBA Finals, if not won the world championship in past years.
Fox Sports 1 personality Nick Wright pointed out that, in his opinion, head coach Steve Kerr has five players that he trusts — Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins, and Kevon Looney — but that he cannot play all five at the same time.
It is a problem for Golden State because, as he also pointed out, reserve guard Jordan Poole has played poorly in the playoffs.
Jordan Poole in Playoffs:
Last year: 17.0 PPG, 50.8 FG%, 39.1 3P%, 91.5 FT%, 27.5 MPG
This year: 11.6 PPG, 35.5 FG%, 28.8 3P%, 75.8 FT%, 22.8 MPG
“The Warriors have 5 guys that Steve Kerr trusts, and he can’t play them all at the same time against the Lakers.” — @getnickwright pic.twitter.com/RP9vOyy1zT
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) May 8, 2023
Last year, Poole averaged 18.5 points a game in the regular season, and his efficiency during the postseason was outstanding.
He was a major factor in the Warriors winning their four championship last June, and he was rewarded with a big contract extension in October.
But throughout this season, his marksmanship has fallen off, especially in the playoffs.
He had 21 points and made six 3-pointers in Game 1 versus L.A., but in the last two games, he has had only six and five points, respectively.
If Golden State is to even this series and move past LeBron James and crew, Poole will need to step things up and return to the form he continually displayed a year ago when he was on fire.
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