The last time the Golden State Warriors saw the New York Knicks, they were watching their star guard, Stephen Curry, submit one of the greatest performances in the history of Madison Square Garden. In the game on Feb. 27, Curry dropped 54 points and added seven assists, six rebounds and three steals. He also shot 64.2 percent from the floor and 11-13 (84.6 percent) from three-point range. Including the buckets he assisted on, Curry accounted for an astounding 70 points. It was a game for the ages.
There was only one flaw in Curry’s performance that night, though—the Warriors still lost, 109-105.
Golden State played that game without their featured frontcourt player, David Lee, because he was suspended by the NBA for his role in the brawl with Roy Hibbert. Without Lee on the floor, the rest of the Warriors struggled to score. With Curry’s stats taken out, the Warriors shot just 40.9 percent from the floor and just 28.6 percent from long-range. Including Curry, they also turned the ball over 17 times and were out-rebounded 46-38 by New York.
The two teams will meet again on Monday night. This time Lee will be on the floor and the Warriors will be looking for a win more than another 54-point explosion from Curry. The Warriors are just 4-6 over their last 10 games and have dropped to the six-seed in the Western Conference.
To get back on track and be playing well as they head into postseason, the Warriors need a big victory way more than a historic performance from one of their players in the big-picture. A win over a quality team like the Knicks will help them in terms of their record and in terms of their confidence as well. If Curry goes off for 54 points and 11 threes again, that’s great, but the Warriors need that performance to lead to a win.