Coach Mark Jackson believes the Golden State Warriors have the potential to be great, and it's difficult to argue the point with the team on the verge of its longest winning streak in over 38 years.
The Warriors seek their ninth consecutive victory as they continue their road trip against the struggling Washington Wizards on Sunday night.
Trailing by 15 with 6:48 remaining Friday at Atlanta, Golden State (22-13) stormed back and stunned the Hawks 101-100 on Andre Iguodala's 3-pointer as time expired.
The Warriors, who have won the first four on their seven-game trip and five straight away from home overall, were coming off a 123-114 victory over Miami the previous night.
Golden State hasn't won nine straight since a 10-game run from Dec. 6-23, 1975, and it hasn't won six consecutive road games since March 12-April 6, 2005.
"Great teams don't make excuses. And we're trying to become great, which makes me even more proud of them," Jackson said. "They could have easily said, 'We're 3-0 on this trip, we lost to the Hawks after a big win last night.' But this team has no quit. They are high character (guys), they enjoy one another, and when you do the right things, great things happen."
David Lee scored a game-high 23 points, Stephen Curry added 22 despite shooting 1 of 7 from 3-point range, and Klay Thompson finished with 21 for the Warriors, who haven't lost since falling to San Antonio on a last-second shot Dec. 19.
"We have a lot of confidence. When we were down no one was panicking or quitting on the game," said Curry, who scored 36 points the previous night. "So for us to make the plays down the stretch, get the stops and get the rebounds to give ourselves a shot, and then Andre taking over, that's a credit to every single guy on the floor."
Curry scored 35 points as the Warriors beat Washington 101-92 in the most recent meeting March 23, marking their fifth straight victory in the series.
The Wizards (14-16) have dropped five of six at home after losing 101-88 to Toronto on Friday, a result that left the crowd booing and coach Randy Wittman fuming.
"More selfish play than we've had. We can't play that way. We've proven over the last couple years we can't play that way," Wittman said. "Getting concerned with, 'Why am I coming out? How many minutes am I getting? How many shots am I getting?' Rather than: 'What is the team doing?' ... We're not good enough to do it that way."
John Wall had averaged 22.8 points over his previous eight games, but he shot 4 of 15 from the field and finished with 11 points Friday. He disagreed with Wittman's assessment.
"I don't see that at all. I think we're playing the right way," Wall said. "We tried to do the right thing, but shots weren't falling. We didn't have enough space. You couldn't penetrate if you wanted to. You couldn't get open shots."
Forward Trevor Booker then disagreed with Wall.
"At times, it looked like we didn't want to play," said Booker, who had eight points and 13 rebounds. "It's pretty embarrassing, especially when they started booing us."
The Wizards, who have shot only 39.4 percent over their last two games, have lost three straight home meetings with Golden State.
- Sports & Recreation
- Golden State Warriors
- Washington Wizards
- Stephen Curry
- Andre Iguodala