Cumberland Times-News

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December 8, 2012

Lee’s 24 points lead Warriors to 101-97 win

WASHINGTON — One night after an emotional homecoming for their coach, the Golden State Warriors used all their physical reserve to pull out a third straight win on the road.

David Lee had 24 points and 17 rebounds, Klay Thompson added 23 points and the Warriors beat the Washington Wizards 101-97 on Saturday night. Golden State has won the first three games of a road trip for the first time since February, 2003.

“Physically playing in this league is draining. Fatigue sets in and the good teams have a way of telling their bodies: ‘hold off until later. We’ve got to find a way to get a win,’” Warriors coach Mark Jackson said.

Golden State led for nearly all the game, but the pesky Wizards kept challenging.

Stephen Curry scored 22 points for Golden State, which has four more games on its longest road trip of the season. The Warriors are 13-7 overall, the first time they’ve been six games over .500 since the end of the 2007-08 season.

That doesn’t matter to Jackson, in his second season with Golden State. He claimed not to take any special joy in winning in Brooklyn just a few blocks from where he played high school ball. Jackson is trying to change the culture of a team that’s won more than it lost just twice in the last 18 seasons.

“I understand the fans and the organization and the history of this team, but that’s not my history, so this team — our history is last year and this year,” Jackson said.

Washington (2-15) was led by Jordan Crawford, who had 22 points, seven rebounds and eight assists, tying a season high for points and assists. Bradley Beal scored 17 points, Kevin Seraphin and Cartier Martin both had 14. All of Martin’s points came in the second quarter. Martin did not attempt a shot in the second half.

The Wizards lost their first 12 this season, then won two of three, including an improbable victory over Miami on Tuesday before a flat performance at Atlanta on Friday.

Washington sustained another injury to a point guard. Playing all this season without John Wall because of a left knee injury, backup A.J. Price fractured his right hand four minutes into the game and will be lost four to six weeks.

“I knew I hurt myself right away, but I was going to try and play through it, came down I think the next possession and tried to throw the crosscourt pass and really couldn’t get anything behind it,” Price said.

“I figured if I can’t pass, then I’m just going to hurt my team.”

The Wizards have none of the four point guards they began training camp with. Wall, who was originally supposed to be back in late November, has yet to practice. Two others, Jannero Pargo and Shelvin Mack, were cut.

Unless Washington makes a roster move, Crawford and Shaun Livingston are the only point guards around.

The biggest concern for the Wizards was rebounding. Golden State had a huge 57-37 advantage.

“I think really the big difference obviously tonight being we got just hammered on the boards,” coach Randy Wittman said.

The Wizards pulled into an 84-all tie when Chris Singleton hit one of two free throws with 4 minutes to play, but Golden State outscored Washington 9-1 on five points by Thompson, a jumper by Jarrett Jack and a layup by Lee to take a 93-85 lead with 2:19 to play.

Beal hit a 3-pointer with 8.2 seconds left to allow Washington to pull within 97-96. Curry hit two free throws, and Beal was fouled with 4.2 seconds to play. He hit the first, deliberately missed the second, Nene tipped the ball to Beal, whose shot missed badly. Carl Landry hit two free throws with 2 seconds left to seal it.

“We have one agenda — to win and make a deep run in the playoffs,” Thompson said. “Last year we talked about playing defense. This year, we’re actually out there doing it.”

The Warriors, winners of 10 of their last 12, are now 6-1 against the East.

NOTES: Wizards F Trevor Ariza missed his second straight game with a strained left calf. F Trevor Booker his seventh straight with a right knee injury. When asked before the game if there was an update on Trevor, Wittman joked: Which one?” ... Golden State F Richard Jefferson, who missed his 10th straight game with a strained right calf, says he’s nearing a return. ... Warriors rookie F Draymond Green fouled out with 16.1 seconds to play. It was Golden State’s second disqualification of the season. ... Thompson tied his career high with five 3-pointers.

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