The Golden State Warriors saw the return of Monta Ellis Monday afternoon against the Phoenix Suns, but were without another top scorer in big man David Lee due to illness. The W's have struggled at the US Airways Center over the past few years, and today was no different as the Suns exploited a laundry list of Warriors mistakes, eventually earning their first home win by the score of 102-91.
The Warriors bailed the Suns offense out in the first half by sending them to the line, giving Phoenix a four-point halftime lead. And after a few lead swaps in the third quarter, the Suns took over down the stretch with clutch threes and solid defense to put away the Warriors for good. The Suns took advantage of the 17 Warriors turnovers, though played a rather even game otherwise.
Dominic McQuire played very well in David Lee's absence, scoring 14 and and grabbing 9 rebounds, while Monta Ellis lead the way with 18 and 11 assists. Steph Curry was in foul trouble all game long, scoring 10 points in only 23 minutes, while Dorell Wright was scoreless on the afternoon.
The W's also got good production out of their bigs today, especially Ekpe Udoh and Kwame Brown off the bench, who scored 11 and 9 respectfully with a combined 10 boards. Brandon Rush added 13 off the bench in 32 minutes of play, while rookies Klay Thompson and Charles Jenkins added six a piece.
As for the Suns, rookie Markief Morris excelled off the bench, scoring 16 in 32 minutes along with 9 boards, though it was the Steve Nash show once again, scoring a game-high 21 points along with 9 assists. Jared Dudley dropped 15, while Shannon Brown had 10 off the bench. Phoenix scored much more than their 89 point average coming into the game, and dominated the glass 49-36. Apparently the W's are the Suns panacea.
With the loss the Warriors move to 2-3 on the season, and now haven't won in Phoenix in their last 13 attempts. Full box score can be found here.
For more on the Warriors, head over to Golden State of Mind to get your fix.