The Golden State Warriors rallied to beat the Heat, 118-112, in Miami on Wednesday, as Steph Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 10 three-pointers and 75 points.
Thompson reeled off 15 consecutive points in the fourth quarter to finish with 33, while Curry made the go-ahead three-pointer in the final minute to finish with 42. Curry, who leads the league with 30.0 points per game, has now topped the 40-point mark nine times this season, as Golden State (51-5) continues its quest to surpass Michael Jordan’s 72-win Chicago Bulls.
“I think Golden State is not going to get that record,” CBS Sports Network basketball analyst Wally Szczerbiak said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “I think someone’s going to step up and beat them. I just can’t fathom them being that good. I watched Draymond Green, obviously Steph Curry is tremendous and Klay Thompson – I saw those guys in college. And all of a sudden for them to go into the NBA, a league of many Hall-of-Famers, and for them to be doing what they’re doing – listen, I’m impressed by it, but I feel like there’s some teams in the league that should step up and put an end to this.”
Easier said than done. Golden State is 134-25 (.842) since the beginning of last season (playoffs included). The Warriors haven’t lost back-to-back since dropping Games 2 and 3 of the Finals to Cleveland last June.
Then they won three straight by a combined 42 points.
Is the rest of the league just lacking overall? Is that why the Warriors have been so good?
“I wouldn’t say that,” Szczerbiak said. “I think basketball is in a good place. I think there’s a little bit of a turnover right now where there’s a generation that’s kind of passing the torch to a younger generation. We’re going to see where that goes. I think it’s no secret sometimes the shooting aspect is lacking and here you got a team that has great shooters and shoots high percentage. I’m a big percentage guy as far as analytics go. You have a good combination of high-percentage shooters, and as a result, a lot of the other teams in the league can’t compete with a team like Golden State because of the shooting ability that they have. I just think their system is tremendous, but I don’t think they’re overwhelming in talent. I think from a playoff scenario and a playoff series, there’s a couple teams that could knock them off. Cleveland, when they’re healthy, we saw how they played against them in the Finals when they had their pieces. I think this year they’re going to be able to compete with them if they meet them in the Finals.”
Szczerbiak’s preference for underdogs should come as no surprise. As you may recall, he led Miami of Ohio to the Sweet 16 as a 10-seed in 1999.
Gregg Giannotti asked Szczerbiak, half-serious, if he grew up hating Michael Jordan.
“No, I didn’t hate Michael Jordan, but I didn’t want to see him win every single year,” Szczerbiak said. “I don’t think that’s good for the game. I love seeing the underdog or the other teams that weren’t expected to win knock them off. I don’t know. That’s just the kind of guy I was. When Tiger Woods was dominating every golf tournament, I wanted to see someone beat him and take the challenge to knock him off that pedestal and beat him. That’s how I’ve always been, and it’s the type of scenario like this. Golden State got their championship last year. I’d like to see someone else get it this year.”