Resilient Warriors hang on
Davis has off night, but Richardson, Murphy lead comeback against Knicks
By Josh Suchon, STAFF WRITER
Warriors's Jason Richardson shots over Knicks' Antonio Davis in the first half Friday night. (Ray Chavez/staff)
OAKLAND — It was probably the worst half of Baron Davis' career with the Warriors, if not his entire pro career.
Davis had no field goals, three fouls, five missed shots and a technical foul that ended with Derek Fisher escorting him to the locker room before he did or said something worse.
The Warriors' first game home after an East Coast trip had the makings of a stinker Friday night against New York.
But Davis got himself going by feeding alley-oops to Jason Richardson, some 3-pointers finally started to fall, and the defense took over down the stretch to preserve an ugly, yet thrilling 86-84 win over the Knicks at the soldout Arena.
"The first game home from a road trip is usually the toughest," Fisher said. "We want to win these kind of games. We're telling ourselves, even when we're shooting poorly, just figure out a way to win."
Down a point with just over a minute left, after Jamal Crawford hit a tough runner over Adonal Foyle and Richardson, the Warriors answered on a feed from Davis to Foyle in the paint to regain the lead.
On the other end, Malik Rose missed a jumper, and Foyle grabbed the rebound.
Davis was fouled on a hard drive, but he made just one free throw for a two-point lead.
On the game's final possession, Crawford, who scored 21 points in a great effort, drove the middle against Richardson. Davis came over and stripped him of the ball, knocking the ball loose as the clock ran out.
"In games like that, you just have to figure out the flow," Davis said. "I had a flat offensive rhythm. I was just trying to be a nuisance on defense and make plays for my teammates. We had some guys step up and hit some big shots. That's what we will need to win."
Davis' first field goal didn't come until 6:55 remained in the third quarter, he was 3-for-12 overall and admittedly frustrated the entire game.But he dished out 12 assists
and was there on the final play.
"We all have those nights," Foyle said. "But he went to secondary moves. He went to the lane and created shots for others. He has a very good sense of the game and makes everybody around him better. That's why he's a superstar in this league."
The Warriors were 2 of 14 on threes in the first half but 7-for-15 in the second half.
"We're not shooting a high percentage now, individually or collectively, but we have perimeter players who can make shots," said Fisher, who hit a big 3-pointer at 2:58 for an 80-78 lead.
"If you're open and have a good look at the basket, shoot the ball. We've been fighting with effort and playing hard and figuring out ways to win close games. We'll continue to build on that."
With Davis unable to find his scoring touch, Richardson (24 points) and Troy Murphy (19 points) shouldered the scoring load.
"It was just a hard-fought game," said Murphy, both feet soaking in ice and admittedly soar after banging with Eddy Curry under the boards. "It's the game you usually play against the Knicks. We were lucky to get a win, the way we played in the first half."
Larry Brown, after a well-publicized off-season move to the Knicks, is now 0-5 coaching his new team.
"Larry's trying to put a system in with a bunch of guys he doesn't know," Warriors coach Mike Montgomery said. "He wants to play a certain way. It's obvious it works and it wins. Sometimes it's not easy to convince people to change their ways. You can't question his credentials. You have to feel like it's just a matter of time."
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