Arenas leads Wizards over Warriors
“That’s one thing about this arena, the fans are always with you,” said Arenas, who played with the Warriors his first two years in the league. “It was good to hear a few cheers at the beginning of the game.”
Arenas, who missed most of the past two years with knee injuries, had his 29th career game of 40 or more points.
“When we got the ball in Gilbert’s hands he made plays,” Wizards’ coach Flip Saunders said. “When you have a guy directly involved with 71 of your points, he’s made a huge impact.”
Caron Butler(notes) added a season-high 28 points and 10 rebounds for the Wizards. Brendan Haywood(notes) scored 15 points to go with 12 rebounds and Antawn Jamison(notes) had 10 points and 10 rebounds.
“We needed to get out of Washington and refocus,” Arenas said. “People off the street say ‘Why are you guys losing? Get it together!’ You can get away from that when you go on a trip and it’s just you and your team.”
Monta Ellis(notes) scored 30 points to lead the Warriors, who lost their fifth straight overall and their fourth at home. Stephen Curry(notes) added a season-high 27 points, Corey Maggette(notes) had 23 and Anthony Randolph(notes) 15.
“Gilbert Arenas had an unbelievable performance,” Warriors’ coach Don Nelson said. “It sounds strange but we blitzed our defense at every turn but his greatness was overwhelming.”
The Warriors erased nearly all of a 12-point deficit to climb within 60-59 of the Wizards by halftime.
Ellis has scored 30 or more points eight times in his last 15 games.
“I think he should be an all-star this year,” Arenas said. “His play is exciting and I think he can continue to carry this team.”
Arenas, who was 15 of 25 from the field, recorded his highest point total since scoring 54 against the Phoenix Suns on Dec. 22, 2006.
“There was some talk about him not being at his best because of his injury but stats don’t lie,” Curry said. “He dominated the game from start to finish.”
Maggette scored more than 20 points in his fourth consecutive game. He’s shooting .659 (27 for 41) over that span.
Jamison left the game with a stinger in his neck after a collision with Curry in the second quarter.
Jamison, who scored over 30 points in each of his previous three games, returned to the court for a few minutes but remained in the locker room following halftime to receive treatment. He later came back late in the third quarter.
NOTES: Warriors’ C Mikki Moore(notes) had surgery to remove bone spurs in his right ankle and is expected to miss at least three months. … Curry also recorded a season best in made 3-pointers and rebounds. … The Wizards had four players record a double-double in the same game for the first time in two years. … The Wizards’ previous eight games were decided by four or fewer points, an NBA record. … After missing their first five shots of the game, the Wizards made 15 of their next 16, including 10 straight, to turn a 13-3 deficit into a 38-26 advantage. … Arenas’ 17 first-quarter points were a season high for Washington.