The Warriors and Timberwolves put on a thrilling display in Shenzhen but in the end it was the Minnesota reserves getting the best of those of the Dubs in a 111-95 Golden State defeat on Thursday in the opener of the 2017 NBA Global Games.
The Warriors got tremendous production from their starters and opened the game on a 15-4 run. The Dubs would go on to lead by as many as 13 points in the opening frame, but Minnesota outscored Golden State in each of the final three quarters, including a 32-12 trouncing in the final period that was played entirely by each team’s reserves.
Kevin Durant shot 8-for-13 from the floor and led all scorers with 20 points in 25 minutes of play. Splash Brothers Stephen Curry (14 points) and Klay Thompson (13 points) pleased the crowd with a trio of 3-pointers apiece, and Draymond Green stuffed the stat sheet with five points, six boards and eight assists. Additionally, Omri Casspi, who sat out Saturday’s preseason opener in observance Yom Kippur, had six points on 3-of-5 shooting in his Warriors debut.
Karl-Anthony Towns and Jimmy Butler led seven Minnesota double-digit scorers with 16 points apiece, but it was the Timberwolves reserves most responsible for the victory. The Wolves’ went just five players deep in their bench, compared to 12 reserves seeing action for the Dubs, and each of Minnesota’s bench players had a plus/minus differential in double digits on the positive side.
The Dubs and Timberwolves will meet again on Sunday as the NBA Global Games continue in Shanghai.