The Warriors came to Oklahoma City having beaten the Hornets two games out of three, and boasting one new player: guard Kelenna Azubuike, the leading scorer in the D-League so far this season, who came up from Fort Worth today to help fill out Golden State’s injury-ridden roster.
The Bees ran up a 12-point lead in the first quarter; Golden State made up the difference rather quickly and then some. It was 49-45 Warriors at the half. The ever-unpopular Third-Quarter Drought left Golden State up 13 after three; the Hornets fought back in the fourth, at one point pulling to within three, but Golden State prevailed, 97-89.
Matt Barnes inflicted the most damage, scoring 29 (including 5 of 9 from beyond the arc) and hauling down 10 rebounds. One-time Hornet Baron Davis also dropped in 29. The new kid, Azubuike, got to play 16 minutes, garnering four points and three rebounds.
Both Rasual Butler and Jannero Pargo did some serious shooting, Butler scoring 30 and Pargo 24. Tyson Chandler still isn’t scoring a lot, but he pulled down 15 boards. The big difference? The Hornets gave up 16 turnovers, versus only 6 for the Warriors.
The Pistons will be here Thursday, as will the TNT broadcast crew. The Hornets beat Detroit earlier in the season; I promise to be delighted should it happen again.