The Golden State Warriors were disappointed after losing a 103-100 heartbreaker to LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night in L.A., but they weren’t broken.
Despite letting a chance to become the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference playoffs slip away, the Warriors remain buoyed by how well they played against the defending champions and hope to ride that momentum into Friday night’s do-or-die play-in showdown against the visiting Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.
“We’ll be ready,” Warriors star Stephen Curry said after the game. “Right now, it sucks. We played pretty well tonight. Missed this type of environment. It was a lot of fun — high intensity, high competitive level. Proud of everybody that set foot on the floor tonight.
“They made a run in the third quarter, we turned the ball over and changed the game. We still gave ourselves a chance to win.”
Draymond [Green], [Kevon Looney], they’ve been in the playoffs year after year,” Kerr said. “This is what the playoffs are about. Every game is hugely emotional. And you always have to respond one way or the other. Whether you’re coming off a win or you’re coming off a loss, it’s all about just leaving that one behind and getting ready for the next one.”
Curry said he enjoyed playing in an emotional, high-stakes game again after missing all but five games last season because of a broken hand.
He said he knows the Grizzlies will come into Friday’s second play-in game “with the same desperation that we’re going to have,” but he likes his team’s chances in its “biggest game of the year.”
“I was even telling Jordan Bell on the bench in the third quarter — I missed this,” Curry said. “It had been almost two years since the Finals that we were here in a game that had those type of consequences. It’s what you live for. It’s what you work so hard for. It brings out the best in you in terms of your competitiveness and all that. I love it. So we can run it back Friday and, hopefully, all next week.”