Warriors Can’t Stop Miller Time, Lose Heartbreaker in Game 1


Apr 20, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets guard Andre Miller (24) drives to the basket during the first half of game one of the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs against the Golden State Warriors at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Honestly, the refs did an excellent job in this game. So if there are any pissed off Warrior fans out there, you can blame the Warriors for their failure to perform after an eight-point lead.

It was, as all the analysts predicted, one of the best games I’ve seen in a while. After this game, from the point of view of a Warriors’ supporter, I can honestly say that I’m still proud of the Warriors, as they gave their hearts out. In the end, however, it wasn’t them hitting the final shot at the horn; it was Andre Miller.

On an even darker note, David Lee was injured in the third quarter with an apparent thigh injury. Lee says it was a cramp, but they’re doing X-rays as a precautionary measure. It was a bit of an odd afternoon because the Warriors really lost their momentum in the third quarter — what a surprise — and couldn’t complete the comeback in the fourth after the Nuggets had led by nine.

Stephen Curry couldn’t get it going until the second half, but he finished with 19 points and nine assists, just short of a double-double. Klay Thompson, in his first playoff game, finished with 22 points and three rebounds. The Warriors couldn’t ask any more of their starting backcourt, but the difference was Miller, who was able to score 18 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter. Down the stretch, over and over again, he would score on Jarrett Jack and Draymond Green, when it mattered the most.

The Warriors, who were down by seven entering the fourth, had been doing well until the final minutes of the third, where they allowed Corey Brewer to hit two 3-pointers, and one very deep two, which almost ruled a three. The Dubs were lucky to be hanging in the game, facing all the adversity.

When it came to the final minute, Stephen Curry hit a fading three point shot out of the left corner with 14.5 seconds left to tie the game.

After that, however, it was Miller time, and the Nuggets gave him the ball to work the clock down. He scored with 1.5 seconds left, and the Warriors, who had no timeouts left, were forced to miss a prayer from 65 feet.

The Nuggets led by nine at one point, but blew that lead and let Curry put his foot in the door. Fortunately for them, they did just enough to put a dagger in the Warriors’ hearts.

Not angry about it, Warrior fans? Think about it this way. The Warriors faced so much trouble from 2009 until this season, finally made the playoffs, almost beat the best home team in the NBA in game one of their first playoff series in six years, but were bested by a game winning layup in the final seconds, from a guy that’s not considered a scoring threat. Except for this one game.

Tough, isn’t it? Well, the Warriors have some time to get over the loss, and comeback on Tuesday, where they will likely see Kenneth Faried in the starting lineup.